Newsletter 52b - July 2005
Last week saw the end of the church year, with most activities starting the summer break. So it was a time to look back over the year, but also to look forward to next year and reflect on what we want to see God do in the church. As we discussed what we would like to see, and how we would try to get there, it was good to repeatedly see people always keener for the vision of the church, that is for a geographical growth into the areas where there are presently no evangelical churches, and for a growth in maturity, service and witness at Trento principally through the cell groups. There was some cautiousness at first when we started the cell groups a couple of years ago, but now they are seen by most as the way ahead for the congregation.
I will have a juggling of my responsibilities, changing a couple of the groups that I am involved with.
So there has been a bit of shuffling there, and looking at the list of names as I wrote it is good to see new leadership coming up and being trained, and new things for me to develop. These are the two things that I want to be doing in the church. As well as the on-the-job training, now that we are getting to the stage of having a number of cell groups leaders, some with little experience, and cell groups with no-one involved from the leadership team of the church, we will be starting next year a series of meetings every month or two for the leaders, current and future. Pray for the people mentioned, that they would truly serve the people they lead, and that we would see more people with the desire and gifts to lead others. With the numerical growth and geographical dispersion of the congregation, new leaders is what we really need most. Pray also for new missionaries willing to move to these new areas where there is interest in the Gospel but no evangelical witness, and that the church does not have to human resources to reach.
There have been a few events in the church lately. The month began with the annual Sunday School recital, which Pinuccia and the other teachers (Mariangela and Sara with the elder children, Miriam, Melina and Beatrice for the younger) prepared. They all did a good job, and presented the new program for next year as well.
The following week there was the church's fourth weekend away, where the pastor of a church at Florence spoke and gave some encouraging talks. For the rest of the time there walks in the mountains and to a lake, lots of food (as is typical in any Italian event) and a lot of time spent with each other.
Then last Sunday the Valsugana group organised an evangelistic puppet show at a park next to a lake in the mountains – the first of three such performances they will do in different places during the summer, when the lakes are packed. So after the service most of the church went to the park and had lunch together there, and then were ready to help the group and to talk to interested people after the show – of whom there were quite a few.
It is now time for a break for us as well, as in a few hours we will be going to Sicily for a few weeks – also an opportunity for Pinuccia to show off her well developed belly to her friends and family!