Billy Graham Center

Interview with Adrian Ban - Collection 462

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Table of Contents

Brief Description of This Collection

Title Page and Restrictions


An Essay on the Contents of the Collection (Scope and Content)

List Audio Tapes in This Collection (Location Records)

Brief Description.
Oral history interview in which Ban talks about his family background, the revival in his Baptist church in Oradea, Romania; his own conversion; attempts by the government to intimidate Christians; influence of Christians such as Joseph Tson, Liviu Olah, and Aurel Tosa; his involvement in music ministry in Romania; the 1989 revolution in Romania; conditions for the church since the revolution; impressions of the church in the United States and Romania; the Romanian Missionary Society.
Vol.:4 reels of audio tape

Collection 462
[January 12, 2006]
Ban Adrian Octavian; 1966-
Interviews; 1992

Audio tapes




Full name: Adrian Octavian Ban

Birth date: February 20, 1966, in Oradea, Romania

Parents: Florian and Eugenia Ban
Siblings: Mircea -brother, Rodica - sister
Marital Status: Married to Emanuela Gheorghita

Conversion: Age of 14

1980-1984 Infratirea (high school), Oradea, Romania
1985-1990 Technical University, Oradea; BA in Mechanics
1992-1996 Wheaton College Grad School, MA in Educational Ministries

1984-1991 Factory work
1990-1991 Served as translator and assistant for a non-profit organization initiated and run by a Swedish pastor in conjunction with the Romanian Evangelical Alliance, providing assistance to orphanages and the poor

Other significant information: Member of the Second Baptist Church of Oradea. For several years was part of a chamber choir in his church that went to churches all around the country for services. In November 1990, Ban was elected president of the Baptist youth organization.

Scope and Content

Adrian Ban was interviewed by Robert Shuster in October 1992. The events described in the interview cover the time period 1970-1990.

T1 (70 minutes). Parents; his grandparents of the first generation of Baptists in Romania; the example of his parents as Christians; severe illness at the age of 4; father's character and his relationship with him; mother's character and her care for her children; gradual deepening of faith in his family and church life under the influence of pastor Liviu Olah starting about 1976; importance of prayer in the church; parent's decision to stop drinking alcohol and its influence on Adrian; description of Second Baptist Church in Oradea while Olah was pastor; the beginning of a Sunday school for children; description of the program in the Sunday school and contacts with Christian workers from western Europe and the United States; heavy workload of his father and the pressure from the regime to work or go to school on Sunday; description of family devotions; ridicule of Christians by the general society; being called a "poct"(repenter); a typical worship service at Second Baptist; importance of prayer in Rev. Olah's ministry; description of the church's evangelism programs; use of music with evangelism; harassment of the church by the government and the use of informers; pressure at work not to be active in church and to inform on contacts with Westerners; description of the activities of informers in the church; interrogation of pastors; experience of the imprisonment and persecution of Traian Dorz, a member of the Lord's Army cult; policy of Nicolae Ceausescu toward the Christian churches and variation over time and in different parts of the country; interrogation of Joseph Tson; Billy Graham's 1985 Romanian tour; the story of Ban's conversion and the influence of Nicolae Gheorghit; Ban's participation in a chamber choir under the leadership of Aurel (Relu) Tosa; Tosa's influence on Ban

T2 (29 minutes). Tosa's death and its effect on Ban; God's providing for the church's need when Joseph Tson left; favorite passages of the Bible; examples of God's encouragement in Ban's life; difficulties of being a Christian worker in Romania; description of the innovation and impact of the chamber choir; influence of Western hymns on the Romanian Protestants; Tosa's desire to do the best for God with their music; the need for formal training for Christian music directors; reactions of churches to the choir

T3 (70 minutes). Developing a youth program among the Baptists after it became legally possible after the 1989 revolution; the first national Baptist youth conference in Oradea; activities of the youth organization; building support for youth work among pastors; administrative problems; Ban's difficulty in getting into university; attending the Technical University of Oradea while working; work for the Evangelical Alliance as a translator and assistant in relief programs; Joseph Tson and the Romanian Missionary Society and the work of training Christian leaders; memories of Billy Graham's 1985 visit to Oradea (government attitude, the crowds, Graham's preaching, impact of the visit on the church, local press coverage); the Orthodox funeral for Ceausescu's father; comments on Ceausescu opposition to God and his policies in the late 1980s; increasing persecution of Christians in the late 1980s; memories of the 1989 revolution in Oradea and the overthrow of the Communist government; coverage of the revolution on television; the mood of crowds during the revolution; the Christmas when Ceausescu was executed; prayer meetings before the revolution; the situation of the Romanian church after the revolution; Luis Palau's evangelistic campaign in 1990; decline in church attendance in some parts of the country; positive and negative effects of increased contact with Western churches and missionaries since the revolution; need to train young people for Christian work

T4 (16 minutes). Former Romanians in the United States returning to Romania to help the church; the need to develop critical faculties among the Romanian people; Ban's plans to teach in the Baptist Bible Institute in Oradea; the deadening hand of denominational traditions in the United States on Christian life; Communism as God's fire


The materials in this collection were given to the Archives of the Billy Graham Center by Adrian Ban in 1992.

Accession: 92-126, 92-130

August 21, 2000
Robert Shuster

Accession: 92-126, 92-134
Type of Material: Audio Tapes

The following items are located in the Audio Tape file.

T1 - Reel-to-reel, 3-3/4 ips, 70 minutes, one side only. Interview of Adrian Ban by Robert Shuster on October 17, 1992, at the Billy Graham Center Archives.

T2 - Reel-to-reel, 3-3/4 ips, 29 minutes, one side only. Conclusion of interview of Adrian Ban by Robert Shuster on October 17, 1992, at the Billy Graham Center Archives.

T3 - Reel-to-reel, 3-3/4 ips, 70 minutes, one side only. Interview of Adrian Ban by Robert Shuster on October 30, 1992, at the Billy Graham Center Archives.

T4 - Reel-to-reel, 3-3/4 ips, 16 minutes, one side only. Conclusion of interview of Adrian Ban by Robert Shuster on October 30, 1992, at the Billy Graham Center Archives.

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Last Revised: 1/15/01
Expiration: indefinite