Detroit Free Press | Interview with Andre Gasiorowski – Millenium Project



by Naomi Morris | Knight Ridder Services

Andrzej Gasiorowski has a deal for you.

JERUSALEM ‐ He says he’ll charge $10 to build an ecumenical prayer garden on the Mount of Olives, where some religious groups believe the Messiah will reveal himself to humankind.

Gasiorowski, a Polish millionaire who lives in Israel, says investors in his Messianic Garden, on 2 1/2 acres of the hill overlooking Jerusalem, will receive a Mount of Olives certificate.

They also will participate in what he calls a philanthropic plan to develop a fitness spa, a conference center, and a TV network. At least 25 percent of the money raised will go to charity, he said.

The physician-turned-businessman is one of dozens of entrepreneurs promoting millennial ventures in the land where Christianity began.

Gasiorowski said his project is not profit-driven but motivated by the Judeo-Christian philosophy of doing good deeds. “The beauty is that this project is not Israeli or Palestinian, Jewish, Christian or Muslim,” said his partner, Barry Shye, an Israeli who spent 11 years in the United States.

Gasiorowski was born 40 years ago. After the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, he and a friend, Boguslaw Bagsik, began importing razor blades, coffee, and TV sets from Germany. They turned their business into a $22-billion international operation in three years.

At the height of their success, Gasiorowski and his partner lived and worked in a castle near Warsaw that once housed Napoleon’s mistress. They traveled on a private jet and significantly contributed to former Polish President Lech Wales’s first presidential campaign. They also helped Israeli authorities transport Soviet Jewish immigrants to Israel and sold Israeli-made weapons to the Polish army.

Today, Gasiorowski operates from Tel Aviv. He said he’ll list his new company soon on stock exchanges worldwide and that millions of Christians from the United States to South Korea are poised to invest.

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