Training a new generation of men
for pulpit and pastoral ministry in Italy
I would like to update you on my life and growth in pastoral ministry in Italy by the Lord’s grace.
2016 ended with a great blessing: I married Mersia! We got married on December 4 in Messina. We were able to enjoy a wonderful ceremony celebrated by our pastor Johnny Gravino and we rejoiced with our beloved church. Mersia and I are so grateful to the Lord for His grace and His goodness to us. After our wedding ceremony we went to Argentina and Mersia met my family. I am also grateful for how the Lord has grown and strengthened my Christian testimony before the eyes of my extended family members through our marriage. Once there, we spent a very precious time with my family, especially with my mother and brother. I taught on the fundamentals of the faith by John MacArthur. In particular the focus of my study was on “ The Person of Jesus Christ”, “ The work of Christ”, “Salvation” and “The Person and Ministry of the Holy Spirit”. My mother made a profession of faith in Jesus Christ. We are praying the Lord provide a local church for her; Mersia and I are also continuing to study with her via video conference call.
In January, following our time in Argentina, we came back to Messina. It was a joy to be... home again and a joy to be with our church. I am so grateful to be serving in a model ministry; church (Messina) and academy (ITA) are growing models of healthy and biblical ministry in Italy. We continue therefore faithfully serving in both church and ITA with great purpose. The Lord is blessing the work through Johnny’s leadership. In the church, I am in training as a pastor and elder. I also enjoy teaching our men once a month. Right now we are studying Biblical Manhood. When Johnny is away for ministry, I have the additional priviledge of preaching on Sunday mornings. Just recently I preached an expositional series on 1 John that was a real blessing for both myself and the church. I am ultimately so grateful for my wife, Mersia, who is now serving alongside me in the church and ITA. At church, she teaches Generations of Grace (GOG) in our children’s Sunday school class.
The Lord has also provided English language learning for both me and Mersia! A very generous church in the US has provided ITA with special funds to support us through private English classes at an institute in Messina. Mersia is better at the language than me right now! Pray for our progress and plans for future training Lord willing. Both church and ITA leadership have counseled me on pursuing furthe equipping in Berlin, Germany with the EBTC (European Bible Training Center) led by Christian Andresen. They have begun an Mdiv program that is very exciting. I can get further training without having to leave my local church and ITA ministry.
We are so thankful for your love, for your precious prayers, for your support and generosity. We would finally appreciate your prayers for wisdom, grace to honor the Lord in our marriage, and in our church and ministry.
By His grace and with love,
Sebastian and Mersia Mendez