Christian Missionaries

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Some of the local wildlife

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Etna going a bit haywire one evening, we thought that we were going to see our first eruption. It was not to be, though.

A few days late there was a cloud over the hill and when it lifted there was a bit of snow

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Sorry no update for ages and not one now either. Quick prayer request we are starting teaching Lifeshapes in the church here this evening, please pray for us. If time a better update later.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Hello everyone! Its Jess - the American who stayed with Tchad and Andrea this past summer. Just a quick update and some thoughts. This past week I have been hanging out in England. When I initially made my trip plans the intention was to check out some doors that God had been opening. About a week before I was supposed to leave I was on the phone with Anna (from Oxford Vineyard who came to Rome this summer) talking about plans for when I arrived in Oxford and we agreed that it would be great to surprise Tchad and Andrea and Marco and Cinzia with a visit. At the time we both were so excited but not sure how it would all work out. After a few days she said that Paul Grainger was planning a visit and that we could go with him. It was amazing how in the next few days God had worked out all the small details. He was already working them out from the very first time the plan was discussed between Anna and I. Long story short we arrived in Sicily this past Tuesday (which by the way Tchad and Andrea and Marco and Cinzia still had no idea).

The visit was amazing. Sicily is beautiful. To see everyone again was incredible. Just to be a part of the community there completely encouraged, challenged and provided an intentional chance for God to really speak clearly to certain areas in my life. The past couple of months have been a little bit difficult trying to sort through things and I let myself get caught up in those details too often and begin to worry. I let school, family issues, looking for a job, trying to figure out what God is calling me to and what ever else take the place of the first person I need to turn to - God. I felt challenged through the time in Sicily to stop that habit. We spent time praying and waiting for God to speak. Just to be able to talk through things was awesome and something I have not done for ages. I am so grateful for the time there this past week. It was so good to just be back with everyone and spend time with them even for a short time. We went up Mt Etna which was really cool and had the best pizza ever in the brick oven! And of course UNO!

We had a bit of adventure on the trip back to England. We left Catania at 6 am and made it to Palermo in great time. But then hit the worst traffic jam. It took us about 2 hours to move 2 km. The cause of the jam? A lorry was blocking two of the four lanes. Cars were every where trying to push through. In the end we missed our flight and we were redirected to Rome where we had to switch airports and then fly to London Stansted. It was definitely an adventure but one that allowed us to have an extra day away and to think more about what had happened in Sicily. All in all it is so amazing to see how God is moving and working in everything. I am leaving for the states tomorrow still with no job and unsure of where I might be (I have some ideas) but being able to visit with everyone there blessed me and allowed me to refocus and be refreshed to move forward. I have a new sense of peace that everything is going to work out. I am walking away with so much more than I arrived with. And all of that is due in a large part because of the surprise visit to Sicily.

Monday, November 14, 2005

The meeting on Thursday went well and we met with Dario & Melinda, Allessandro & Anna, Graziella, Toure. These are guys that we shared our vision with and told them that we wanted to start discipling them.

On Friday Cinzia rang about 30 people to see if they were free to come for a fun Sat evening - basically the start of a cluster. All of them were either people who had had a relationship with God but had stopped going to church, or were pre-christians.

On Saturday we initially started with the four of us and 2 others - Sarah and Paolo (diff want to all the earlier posts) and we messed about on the playstation and chatted. We then did a 1/2 hour slot of worship, just using a cd and acetates and it was amazing. God was really in the room and it was a fantastic feeling. By the end of worship an other 4 people had turned up and also a family of 4 who had come to stay for the night so we had grown a bit. We then messed about with the playstation and Uno (Kitching Family rules!) and had a very merry time!

Please pray for Paul (leader at Nottingham Vineyard) and 2 others who are coming with him tomorrow to have 2 days with us. Paul lead a team from their church to Rome a year ago with Matthew Rutter co-leading and would like to pray with us and plan other trips to support Marco and Cinzia's vision here. Awesome! And areally cool guy to boot.

Andrea and I have been watching the OC season 1 which we have on DVD and I have to sadly say that we are now addicted to it. Now I understand all of Dan Coopers ramblings about the series :-)

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Youth meeting was great had about 30 people here and was a bit nuts! Lots of playing on DarkWind on the playstation and Pro Evolution, good hot dogs (called Houston here - Italian way of saying W├╝rstel). We set up a prayer room and told everybody that for one hour before eating, we four (Me and Andrea, Marco and Cinzia) would be there, it was great when a couple of them came to spend that time in God's prresence and to seek prayer.

If we do another youth event it will probably not be for a while as we concentrate on the young adults. This Thursday we are having a meeting with some guys that we want to start huddling/discipling who, God willing, will become small group leaders. Please, please pray for this meeting. Today we have a meeting with another church leader who has a girl he would like us to invest in and after that we have another meeting.

Marco and I have been cleaning rubbish and debri off the land for about 3 weeks now, we,ve probably carted away over 100 black bin liners as well as 2 truck loads and have been having a fire going most days - just incredible. We could do with a dozen people willing just to do gardening for a week!

The olive picking has finished - hooray - we gathered 1220kg of olives. That is a lot by the way. The oil is just amazing!

Due to the amount of mice that were living above our heads in the roof of the house where we are sleeping, we decided to get an exterminator in. He came and left lots of different poisons out about 2 weeks ago. The mice died in the roof and an aweful stench started to seep through the walls and ceiling (we reckoned on about 60 dead mice from 2 colonies). 2 days ago maggots started dropping through our ceiling so Andrea and I have temporarily moved rooms - pretty grim!

My knee got healed by God, however, yesterday whilst chopping up some logs a piece of wood shot off and socked me in the left eye, the world went green for a split second and I passed out for a few seconds. When I awoke I had no vision in either eye which gave me 10 seconds of panic followed by praising God as I could see again in a kind of looking through an empty glass sort of way. Today, all is fine, just sore in bright lights and a bit blurry in the left eye. I am very very thankful that it wasn't a lot worse!

Please keep praying for us and let us knmow if you have any prayer requests.

Friday, November 04, 2005

The day after our recent visitors left we did a 24 hr prayer session (though it was actually 25 hrs due to the clocks going back) in one of the rooms of our house and it was fantastic! The presence of God was awesome and it was great to have some of the guys from church coming along and filling in on some of the hour slots. We are intending to do another one at the end of this month - hooray!

Paolo is doing well we've seen quite a bit of him since we arrived here, he just pops over odd afternoons. He is suffering from headaches (to be expected) but has just started work again and has been to church once as well - praise God.

We are praying for our first youth meeting tomorrow, please do so as well if you read this in time. We are also praying for a table football and a table tennis table! God is just amazing. We've been busy cleaning up the houses and the land (about 1 year of work to go!!) and picking the olives, I managed to have a branch snap and drop me out of a tree. My first accident in ages and have a very sore knee to show for it.

We had an earthquake a few days ago epicentre in Nicolosi 5km away. It was only 3.7 on the Richter scale enough to rattle the windows. I was brushing my teeth at the time and didn't notice it! I exited the bathroom to find everybody else huddled together telling me how the house shook from anywhere between 10 seconds (Marco) to 2 mins (Cinzia).

Thats about it for the moment as off out for a date with my wonderful wife to a fine pizzeria! Good night to y'all!

Etna showing a lot of activity, and one of the craters we scrambled to with our recent guests.

Marco still isn't used to changing nappies...

All that work for a few drops of oil - but it tastes fantastic!

Olive collecting, transporting and unloading.

Marco and I unloading the first van load to be followed by another 30 hours of driving. Nice scenery though.