Newsletter 44a - June 2003


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The period since the last newsletter has been characterised by Bible study groups. When I last wrote I had just started a new one in the church, and shortly afterwards I started another one in English for a few of the foreigners in the church. This has certainly kept me busy preparing studies and organising the groups, although I have had some help from other people for some of the groups (Massimo and Jury in the Valsugana, Andrea and Daniela in the new group, Anna in the English group). I would like to have them more involved in the leadership of the groups, and next year it will be necessary as I will not be able to keep up all the commitments that I have had in the last two months. Even now other things like the work at the university at Trento have suffered as I have been able to spend less time on them than I would have wanted. But I figured that I could do this for a couple of months before re-evaluating my ministry or at least, I could not or did not want to go back on what I had promised to do, even after realising it was too much.

For the next two weeks I will be continuing these studies, before my final group of trips away for this academic year, which are mentioned among the upcoming events. By the time I return from these trips, all the groups will have gone into recess for the summer break, along with the band and other regular activities. This will give me eight weeks (less a fortnight when I will be in Sicily on holidays) with more time for doing other things that do not have a strict program, like spending time with friends and developing the computer program to study the Bible. It will also be a time to work out with the leadership of the church where my priorities should be for the next 12 months, and what I will be doing. But more on these things in the next newsletter.

In the meantime, the most important thing to pray for is the summer evangelistic team at Perugia. This year I am organising it, with help from the new GBU staff worker at Perugia. Having seen how it works, he will then be able to organise it next year. There seems to be a good team of 13 people coming to help, with a range of nationalities and gifts, and with a lot of Italian speakers which will certainly be a help. The GBU group at Perugia is also very active in this period, and will be able to give us a lot of assistance, not least in the follow up of people we meet. So pray for:

  • a group that can live the Gospel in their relationships with each other and with those that they will meet
  • that we will have opportunities to talk about Jesus with the friends that we meet
  • for the organisational and logistic details that still need to be planned
  • for my leadership of the team, that I can help the team members to witness and to grow in their own faith

Upcoming events

  • 18-21 June: ECM Italy prayer days near Venice
  • 25 June-7 July: Mission at the universities of Perugia
  • 5-6 July: Church houseparty, with the baptism of Robin (unfortunately I will be at Perugia that weekend)

Photos

Lunch after church at our place. In the middle are three members of the English group, myself, Anna (an English teacher who will also be here next year) and James (an exchange student at the university, who leaves at the end of the month). On the ends are Pinuccia (Thursday group) and Robin (Valsugana group, getting baptised next month).
The GBU staff meeting, with families and some of the executive committee. Second from the right in the back row is Giacomo Kim, the new staff worker at Perugia, with his wife and daughter in front of him.
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