Stefano & Jennifer Mariotti

My photo

church-planting in Budrio, Italy

To receive regularly our updates, subscribe here with your e-mail

Saturday, 30 June 2012

Exch@nge 2012 - reaching Italian kids

On Monday morning at 9.00 am we'll start our third experience with the Exch@nge 2012 summer camp.

This year we'll have again a team of American teens coming to help us from Wheaton College Church near Chicago.

The theme of this year will be:
Jesus offers you:
- Service …in a world that looks after number one
- Certainty …in a world where everything is relative
- Power …in a world where anything goes
- Perspective …in a world that lives for a moment
- Purpose …in a world that can’t be bothered
- Contentment …in a world that never has enough

Please do pray with us that through this camp Jesus' name will be made known!

Sunday Service & Exch@nge Planning meeting

Tomorrow Luciano, an elder in San Lazzaro church, will continue the series on
Hebrew 11, preaching on:
"Christ in the faith of Enoch"

"By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him."
Hebrews 11:5-6

We'll have with us a group of American teens from Chicago from Wheaton College Church that is going to help us at the YfC Summer Camp. 


So after the fellowship lunch we'll have a planning meeting and a prayer time for the Exch@nge 2012 summer camp. Please do pray with us for the Italian kids, especially for the majority of them coming from a non-Christian background!


Thursday, 28 June 2012

Porterbrook Italia: where we are, where we'll go!

Please pray for tomorrow and Saturday when Stefano will have a meeting in Bergamo with Jonathan Gilmore,
director of Porterbrook Italia,
and Rob Krause, director of the Porterbrook learning site in Venice, to evaluate this first year of the Italian learning project!

We'll also have to make plans for the future, so we need God's wisdom and guidance.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Interactive Bible-Study - Hebrews 11 - Christ in the faith of Abel


Tonight Stefano will lead an interactive Bible-Study on the series on Hebrew 11.

The goal is to see Hebrews 11 as a museum gallery full of portraits, but each one of them is pointing to the end of the gallery: that is Christ!

Tonight we'll answer in groups at these questions:
  1. Read Matthew 23:29-37. Why do you think Jesus says to the scribes and Pharisees that the blood of innocent Abel will come upon that generation? Do you think that Jesus could ever say something like that to us? Why?
  2. How can Abel's faith have an impact in our lives? And how it can have an impact in the life of our church?
  3. How would you explain to a non-Christian that the sprinkled blood of Jesus speaks a better word than the blood of Abel?
But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.
Hebrews 12:22-24 (ESV)

Monday, 25 June 2012

Porterbrook Local Groups

Tonight Stefano will lead one of the four local group to interact with the material
we studied at the fourth plenary session
of Porterbrook.

The goal is to challenge the students not
only to think about practical applications
in their lives, but also at how what they
are learning can be implemented and transmitted in their churches.




This week we'll look at:

Module "Church": Missional Community Life
Unit 5. Missional rhythms
Unit 6. Missional hospitality
Unit 7. Missional stewardship of time
Unit 8. Missional stewardship of money
Unit 9. Missional grace

Module "World": Evangelism
Unit 6. Introducing to Christian community
Unit 7. Living to provoke questions
Unit 8. Answering questions
Unit 9. Casual conversations about Jesus

Interdenominational Prayer meeting with Pastors from the Bologna area


Tonight Stefano will participate at the
Bologna Evangelica Prayer Meeting,
an interdenominational prayer meeting for
church and mission leaders from the Bologna Area

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Series on Hebrews 11 - Christ in the faith of Abel


Tomorrow Stefano will start the series on Hebrew 11 that will continue till all September.
For the first time in the church of San Lazzaro all the preachers and the men we are introducing to preaching will all share the same theme Sunday after Sunday.

The goal is to see Hebrews 11 as a museum gallery full of portraits, but each one of them is pointing to the end of the gallery: that is Christ!

This Sunday Stefano will preach on Hebrews 11:1-4 - Christ in the faith of Abel!

"Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the people of old received their commendation. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speaks."
Hebrews 11:1-4 (ESV)

"Whomsoever God accepts or respects, he testifieth him to be righteous; that is, to be justified, and freely accepted with him. This Abel was by faith antecedently unto his offering. He was not made righteous, he was not justified by his sacrifice; but therein he showed his faith by his works: and God by acceptance of his works of obedience justified him, as Abraham was justified by works; namely, declaratively; he declared him so to be." [1]


[1]     John Owen, The Works of John Owen, An exposition of the Epistle to the Hebrews, Volume 23, The Ages Digital Library, Albany, 2000, pp. 31-32

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Florence Sport Camp - Conference on Addiction


Tomorrow Stefano will spend all day at
the "Campo Sport" a Christian sport camp organized by some of my closest friends in the hills near Florence.

There will be about 85 teens from all around Italy, quite a few from a non-Christian background.

In the evening Stefano will talk at a conference about additions: Internet, drugs, alcohol, smoking, pornography, ecc.




Saturday, 16 June 2012

Sunday Service 17/06/2012 - Sasso Marconi


On Sunday Stefano and Jenny will be at
Chiesa Evangelica di Sasso Marconi,
a Brethren church in a village near Bologna.

Stefano will preach on Matthew 25:14-30:
"Are you faithful over the talents the Lord has given you?"


"For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. So also he who had the two talents made two talents more. But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master's money. Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, 'Master, you delivered to me five talents; here I have made five talents more.' His master said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.' And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, 'Master, you delivered to me two talents; here I have made two talents more.' His master said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.' He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, 'Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed, so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours.' But his master answered him, 'You wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I scattered no seed? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'
Matthew 25:14-30 (ESV)

My Space - Sharing the Gospel with teens


Tonight we'll have our last meeting for this year with the teens attending
the My Space Club.
We'll have a nice barbecue and fun time with them to celebrate at how God
has blessed this year of activities with them.

We are really thankful to the Lord for how He guided every Bible Study
and social activity we had with them.
Please do continue to pray for them, especially for those who will come back
for the Exch@nge summer camp!

Friday, 15 June 2012

Literature Stand @ San Lazzaro weekly market

Tomorrow morning we'll be at the 
weekly market in San Lazzaro with 
our Literature Stand.
We'll offer free Bibles in many 
languages and Christian literature.
Pray that the Lord will bring people interested to know more about Him 
and His Word!

Impressions from the First National Conference "Christians for the Nation" in Rome.

Vice-President Italian Parliament

Coming home at the end of a long and exciting day at
the First National Conference "Christians for the Nation" in Rome in a Room of the Italian Parliament.


This conference has been described as a milestone of the Italian Christian commitment towards the Nation and the Parliament. 

I found really exciting the presence of so many representative of a broad but sound evangelical churches and missionary agencies. I was challenged to work against the fragmentation of the Italian Evangelical environment.








Watch the Video of the Conference











Watch the video interview of Leonardo De Chirico, Vice-President of the Italian Evangelical Alliance and chairman of the conference.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

First National Conference "Christians for the Nation" in Rome.

Tomorrow Stefano has been invited to participate with others fellow workers from Bologna at the First National Conference "Christians for the Nation" in Rome. 

The Conference will be held in one of the rooms of the Parliament. In the morning, there will be talks by Christians politicians in the House of the Italian Parliament, and of the Italian representatives at the third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization held in Cape Town, South Africa, Oct. 2010. In the afternoon there will be seminars on: family, religious freedom, social action, media, interaction with culture, bioethics, young people and school, et. al.


Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Interactive Bible Study - Ezekiel 34:1-16


Tonight Stefano will lead an interactive Bible-Study on Ezekiel 34:1-16.


We'll focus on practical ways in which we are called by God to be responsible one for another.

We'll see at how our heavenly Father himself
is our model in our looking after one another.

Monday, 11 June 2012

Budrio: Community Meal to raise funds for Cavezzo


Tomorrow evening we'll participate with some of our friends from our village to the Community Meal organized by Budrio, our Town-hall, to raise funds to help the town of Cavezzo.

Budrio has twinned with Cavezzo and many events will be organized to help this town, which is one of the most affected by the earthquake.

 The major of Cavezzo will be there to report about the present situation of the population and to express their gratitude.

Please do pray that this will be for us an opportunity to make closer links with the community of our neighbours and to show in practical ways God's love to them.

Pastors' Fraternal of the Bologna Area

Tonight Stefano will participate at a Pastors' Fraternal of the Bologna Area in Casalecchio.

These are the pastors from the churches we cooperate both in evangelistic events and in the training programme of Porterbrook.

We'll have a time of sharing about our churches' lives, encouragements and challenges.

Then we'll have a time of prayer one for another and for our churches.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Porterbrook - Bologna Local Group

Tomorrow from 3 to 7 pm we'll have the fourth plenary session of the Porterbrook - Bologna Local Group.

The meeting will be held in Nuova Vita Church and we expect about 35 students from 4 churches in Bologna
and a few from other towns and cities.


Tomorrow we'll complete the third and fourth modules of the course:

Module "Church": Missional Community Life
led by Gianluca Derudas from Nuova Vita church:
Unit 5. Missional rhythms
Unit 6. Missional hospitality
Unit 7. Missional stewardship of time
Unit 8. Missional stewardship of money
Unit 9. Missional grace

Module "World": Evangelism
led by Stefano Mariotti from San Lazzaro church:
Unit 6. Introducing to Christian community
Unit 7. Living to provoke questions
Unit 8. Answering questions
Unit 9. Casual conversations about Jesus

We'll watch and discuss these videos:


Thursday, 7 June 2012

Nomad - The Cage - Aldini High-School


Tomorrow morning Stefano will be with
other YfC staff at the High-School Aldini
in Bologna.

This week we have with us: "Nomad",
a team from Northern Ireland specialized
in youth outreach through playing street soccer in a "Cage".

We'll have possibilities to share our testimonies and to invite kids at our
summer camp in Bologna.












Saturday, 2 June 2012

Budrio - Food Collection for Cavezzo

Budrio Community
Be strong guys: keep on going!
Just back from helping with the last packing for the food distribution in Cavezzo, one of the nearby towns most affected by the earthquake.  
11 lorries have been filled with goods for the earthquake people and most of them are already in Cavezzo!
Really encouraging to see such a strong sense of community: this early morning I was working next to kids from high-school, uni students, families, big strong guys and the former major of Budrio!
 


Sunday Services - Pietro Ciavarella

Tomorrow we'll have in San Lazzaro Pietro Ciavarella

Pietro is co-pastor of the
Logos Evangelical Church
in Florence and
director of studies at the
Logos Theological Academy
in Florence.

He also authored a few books in Italian including a book on the Lord's Prayer, one on the Psalms and the most recent on Luther's justification by faith, published by BE Edizioni.

Pietro will preach at the morning service and will lead for us an interactive session at the afternoon meeting.






Friday, 1 June 2012

Budrio - Food Collection for Cavezzo


This evening we've been helping with the food collection for the people affected by the earthquake in Cavezzo.

Tomorrow we'll be there again helping with the packing and loading lorries full of goods.


We've experienced a real sense of community with our neighbours in
order to help other neighbours!

Please do
pray for the possibility
on Tuesday
to go directly to help in the earthquake area!

Food collection for Cavezzo


Today we'll bring some food at the collecting point organized by
our town-hall in Budrio.

Then we'll stay there to help packing and dividing all the goods that tomorrow will be brought to Cavezzo (link to BBC news).



Cavezzo is the town just 30 miles from where we live that has been mostly affected by the earthquake!

On Tuesday
we are planning
to join a Christian organization that will bring food and help to the people in the area and we'll love to be able to comfort them showing God's love to them!



Church Trip


Tomorrow we'll have a church trip on the hills near Bologna.

We'll spend time
with the church of Sasso Marconi and
in the afternoon Stefano will give a talk!