After nearly three years of meetings, first in our home and then later in a private garage provided by a family in the church, the Lord has been gracious to provide us the resources (spiritual and economic) to meet in a place open to the public and in a central area of the city of Catania.
This blessing is not only an occasion for great joy, but also, of great responsibility—to be faithful to teach and live the Word of God. With this in mind, we have just concluded an exegetical study of the book of Acts that we began in order to provide our church with a biblical understanding of the early church and the work of the Holy Spirit. We chose this subject because it is often misunderstood and even distorted.
Through this weekly study, we have learned how to live in the community of the church and the Lord is truly working in our lives. It is a genuine joy to see God transforming the hearts and minds of those who are a part of our local church here in Catania. There have been challenges, difficulties, and bouts with tiredness, but it is worth it!
In addition to meeting regularly as a congregation, we are also building personal relationships and providing pastoral care to the individuals and families that need continuous biblical counsel so that they might grow in knowledge and be empowered to live out their Christian lives from day to day. For this purpose, the Lord has been gracious to give us some men in the church who demonstrate maturity and seem to possess gifts for the “building up” of the church. I am meeting with them regularly for discipleship.
We are learning every day that it is very important for us to seek God’s face continuously in prayer and to ask Him to give us the wisdom that we need to reach out to the unbelievers in our community. The Lord has graciously given us the opportunity to organize evangelistic dinners for the homeless. The local government in Catania has also recognized our trustworthiness and given us their approval to distribute food to the poor.
We are especially praying for one family with whom we have had the blessing of sharing the gospel on many occasions. The husband and wife (Salvatore and Marinella) are responsible for the care of twelve couples that are within the Catholic Church but are seeking to know God’s will for their marriages and families. Their response to the Word of God has been very positive, and at our suggestion, they have begun reading the Word together as a couple. Please pray for them, along with another family that often comes to our church from another neighboring county to listen to the Word of God. Their names are Mariella, Nino, Rossana, and Silvana.
Finally, please pray for me that God would give me wisdom through the study of the Scriptures to instruct and guide the church as He desires. Also pray that the Lord will give me the necessary strength to drive back and forth (3 times a week) from my home in Caltanissetta to the church’s meeting place in Catania.
Paul is the founder of HeartCry Missionary Society and currently serves as its missions director. He also ministered as a missionary in Peru for ten years. He has preached hundreds of sermons and has authored a dozen published works. Paul lives in Radford, Virginia, with his wife Charo and their four children: Ian, Evan, Rowan, and Bronwyn.More By Paul David Washer