When I was much younger, summer was something I waited for! Probably the major reason was that I didn’t have to go to school. Yes, you guessed it, school was never my favorite thing. Summer also meant going on vacation as a family. As a missionary family, we never had much money, but my parents always planned a few weeks of vacation. Normally we went camping by the sea shore. Packing all the camping gear was not always fun.We had two tents, since there were six in our family plus a dog and we packed the cooking gear since we didn’t go out to eat. They were special times where we enjoyed doing things together as a family: devotional times, games, and just playing in the water.
Years have gone by, and now Loredana and I still look forward to summer.
The reason we look forward to summer is because of VBS! We have been blessed for a few years to have Immanuel Bible Church from Springfield, VA send a team to help us reach out to children and their families in the neighborhood of the area where we meet as a church. Our meeting facility is not at our disposal all the time, so we meet with the children in a park.
God has a provided a wonderful park within walking distance from where our church meets. This year we also had a second church help us from the US: a group of six from Grace Baptist Church from Santa Clarita, CA. We had a wonderful time with them, and they worked well with the Stanisci and Buss families and us. We had many opportunities to share the Gospel with the children and also with parents and grandparents. One of the added blessings is that many of the children at the park go to school with the children of the Buss family, so there is an ongoing relationship.
Three weeks later, the team of 14 from Grace Immanuel Bible church in Springfield, VA arrived. Again, it was such a blessing to reach out to many children and their parents. An added joy was to have our son Jordan, who is the church’s outreach pastor, lead the group! Jordan also preached in Italian for our church’s Sunday service. God is using these programs to establish credibility in our neighborhood, as the people become more aware of our presence as a church. Please pray that some lasting contacts would be established through these two weeks of VBS ministry in the park.
Many families go on vacation during the summer, so some of our faithful believers are away. In a small church, even one or two families make a big difference. We are grateful for some visitors that come to our services when they visit Rome. We want you to know what an encouragement it is for us, that if you plan a vacation in Rome, you try to come to our church and worship with us. We have been gifted with translation equipment, so when you come you can participate fully in our services.
Please pray for David, as I will have the responsibility of preaching and leading the church alone this summer. Loredana is doing a wonderful job discipling the women and teaching some of the ladies, even though our main Bible studies have been stopped for the summer. We count on your prayers; we are depending on God for strength and much wisdom as we serve joyfully during demanding times.
Please pray for my dad, Bill Standridge, who is in a nursing home in Milano. David’s brother Dan, who lives there, is in the US for the summer, so we will be making regular trips northward to encourage him and be close to him. Pray, also, for Jordan and Jenny who are planning to come to Italy as missionaries in June 2020. During their time here with us, they were able to visit areas of the city in preparation for their family’s first year in Rome.
Thank you for your prayers and for your financial partnership with us,
David and Loredana
If you would like to support our ministry to Italy
Please, donate now OR send your tax deductible gifts to:
55 South Main Street #164
Oberlin, OH 44074
Mark on the memo line or on a separate note: For the ministry of David and Loredana Standridge