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Fall Update

by ITALY Kroeckertskothen, Thomas and Rebecca on October 2, 2008
 
Ciao friends and prayer partners,
  
we want to send you at least a short update before we leave on Monday for a little vacation for our 10th anniversary on 10.10.
We are thankful that we can celebrate this date together. The Lord has blessed us in our marriage and so we think it's time to celebrate that a bit.
And we also wanted to thank you for your support in prayer and also financially, which is we believe not always easy watching the news in these days.
  
Last week Autumn officially began and we are all pulling our sweaters out of the closets and getting ready to face the long season of increasing cold and days with fewer hours of sunlight. It sure is good to have the memory of the summer sun and heat to remind us that the cold and wind won't last forever. Looking forward to what will come later is important to getting through uncomfortable times. It is easier to get through the difficulties that we encounter when we know that the promise of sunnier days will most definitely be kept.

We had an exciting outreach in one of the parks here in Umbertide at the beginning of August-more than 30 children came each day to see clowns, watch puppets, hear a Bible story and do a craft. It was a great time for talking with parents and grandparents. We are so thankful for the participation of the believers from the Castello church - they were a great encouragement to us.
 As a follow up to this evangelism we planned for another day of clowns, crafts and a Bible story....but three times our plans were complicated by weather. And also tomorrow it seems that we have to cancel it, because of bad weather conditions. It's cold and rainy but we invited several Kids to join the English club, which Kim our colleague is doing.

It's not easy to invite Italians into the church building, they are very skeptical and suspicious concerning an evangelical church. And we are just a small group, so it will take time till people know us and trust us.
   
Over the last months we have had good opportunities to get to know some people Umbertide better. We have asked you to pray for some of them. We'd like to give you a quick update so you can know how your prayers are being answered. Gagu, our neighbor, comes sometimes for the bi-weekly Bible study. He is curious and enjoys talking about what he hears so do keep praying for him. GianCarlo has been reading the Bible we gave him and seems to be ready to pick back up with the Bible study with George, pray that he follows through on this interest.
Gabriele and Joana we see once in a while. Joana is pregnant now so please pray that we have opportunities to share about the gift of life. Marco and Silvia with Micol
we see or hear them at least one or two times a week. Marco had a bike accident and can't go to work, so Thomas had the chance to see him quite often. We want to invite them for the ladies' and men's evangelism in November.
Alessandro and Susi with Alessio and Elisa, a couple in our age, which we came to know last year. But they attended the evangelistic outreach in the park and afterwards they invited us for dinner and we went with them one afternoon to the beach.
  
Please pray that we have wisdom when it's time to present the gospel in a direct way. They need to have confidence in us. They must know that we are just normal people – but with the best message: there is salvation and hope for everyone who believes in Jesus Christ.
  
Activities that are on the calendar for the next few months include a ladies' evangelism, a men's evangelism with a dinner at the church-sala of the Castello church. Also an outreach with the Carolers in December.
We appreciate your prayer and look forward to letting you know how God is answering, how He is working to bring about the birth and care of believers so that they will indeed "...appear as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life". Pray that we will also be lights where He has placed us.

We hope to see you all next year. Be blessed, Thomas and Rebecca
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