Friday, October 4
The Waldensian Church is rooted in the teachings of the 12th-century preacher Valdesius, which also influenced Francis of Assisi. Both men underscored the poverty and simplicity of the early church. The community of faith that gathered around Valdesius survived centuries of persecution. The current constitution of the Italian Republic, approved by Parliament in 1947, granted the Waldensian Church freedom of worship. The Italian government did not sign into law the right to religious freedom for the Waldensian Church until 1984.
Having experienced discrimination and persecution throughout much of its history, the Waldensian Church today seeks to be host and advocate for the millions of immigrants who have arrived in Italy the past 20 years. A first fruit of these efforts has been connection and dialogue with African immigrants who in their countries of origin were members of mainline Protestant denominations. This dialogue has led to the creation of the Being Church Together (BCT) program, which seeks to help Italian and non-Italian Protestants learn to worship and exercise church governance in a shared, mutually enriching fashion. To this end, BCT organized three training events for immigrant and Italian lay leaders in 2012. The central theme of these meetings was “integration in both society and the church.” Participants in the events expressed appreciation for the opportunity to learn about, discuss, and decide together how they wanted to be church.
Let us join in prayer for:
Waldensian Evangelical Church: Rev. Maria Bonafede, moderator • Confronti: Dr. Paolo Naso, director • Waldensian Theological Faculty • Federation of Evangelical Churches in Italy: Ms. Laura Casorio, general secretary, Ms. Bianca de Lecce, Refugee and Migrant Service • Casa Materna: Rosaria Vincenzi, administrator
Presbytery Partnership: Presbytery of Kiskiminetas, with the Waldensian Evangelical Church
PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Andy Rector, PMA
Rev. James Reese, FDN
Elaine Reesor, PMA/OGA
Let us pray
Gracious God, we thank you for the presence among us of brothers and sisters who on other shores and in distant places have known and loved you. Permit us to be both teachers and learners, that we may edify one another about your faithfulness and your claim upon our lives. Amen.
Billy, I notice that the demographic data on today's page for Italy in the print edition is a repeat of the data for France. You probably already know this. It is no big deal. Just wanted you to know that someone noticed. I also notice that this data is not included in the online edition. Thanks for your work with this helpful publication. Frank