I have started to write this post multiple times, and every time I come back to it, I just can’t do it. I know I left you all hanging on the Italy portion of our trip. And I know that I need to just write this part and get it overwith. But here’s the thing…
I loved Italy. I loved spending time with Keith and Debby and their sweet kiddos. In some way that I can’t even articulate, our time in Italy changed me.
So maybe part of me hesitates to write this post, because once it’s over…well, then it’s over. And the part of the trip that changed me – that part is not really “over” yet.
So, let’s try to do this…again. *Deep breath.*
We landed in Milan on Saturday, October 23, and were greeted at the airport by our aforementioned missionary friend, Keith. As we stepped outside (mere moments before we walked right by a Maserati, by the way), we realized that Milan was MUCH cooler than Halkidiki, Greece. Whoops. Maybe next time we take an international trip, I’ll try to check the weather first. Duh.
The next morning, we had the privilege of attending church, held in Keith and Debby’s home. The entire service was in Italian, so Debby translated parts of it for me. Luke was able to play guitar with an Italian believer named Orazio, and that was a good connect for him.
The next day, we got another taste of everyday missionary life as Luke and I accompanied Keith to a neighborhood of apartments that would be considered the “projects.” There we were able to distribute about 750 fliers sharing the Good News of Christ.
That evening (Monday), we went with the whole family to downtown Milan for a little bit of sightseeing. It was beautiful. We perused an old castle, walked through the streets of old buildings, and tried our first bites of gelato.
Quite possibly the most amazing building I’ve ever been inside is the Duomo. It’s a huge cathedral in Milan…So incredibly ornate and beautiful, and yet so incredibly sad when you see people lighting candles for their deceased relatives and praying to the saints. Italy, though steeped in religious tradition, is a very dark place.
(Please note that I’m leaving out gajillions of pictures I could be sharing, in the interest of keeping it reasonably short-ish. If you need to see more, let me know. My computer is gurgling-full with them.)
The next day, Tuesday, we enjoyed a day at Lake Como. One word – BEAUTIFUL! We walked around the lake, and then took the “Funicolare” (i.e. cable train) up the side of the mountain and had a picnic at the top.
That evening, we helped teach a group of Italians in an English class. It was a fun experience! The four students we were working with were already fairly fluent and able to hold a conversation in English. It was fun to be involved in that arm of Keith and Debby’s ministry as well.
Maybe one of the coolest parts of being in Italy (besides getting to know one amazing family…and besides the coffee…oh, the coffee…) was just seeing the day-to-day life of a missionary. And then catching the vision for their work. They have a strong desire to see Christ’s gospel spread to the people of Italy.