From religion to relationship

Posted on January 24, 2011 by VMMissions Staff

When Francesco, a young man who attends Centro Koinonia, Bari, Italy, began a new job, he immediately connected with Luigi, a colleague, who questioned him, “Who are you? I can see in your face that you are different!”

Two years earlier Luigi had left the religious sect he was part of, having discovered who Jesus really is through reading the Bible for himself! All his former associates rejected him and refused to speak with him. He felt lonely and abandoned, but God understood his seeking heart.

Luigi’s friendship with Francesco soon opened the way for an invitation to Centro Koinonia. Since that very first visit, Luigi continues to participate and to ask innumerable questions in an attempt to escape the doctrinal entrenchment that imprisoned him. But above all, he experienced loving fellowship and acceptance and was drawn into relationship with Jesus Christ.

Luigi testifies that he’s never before experienced such a sense of inner peace and freedom! These words of Jesus pierced his heart and confirmed his faith, “. . .anyone who has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). On December 5, Luigi publicly sealed his commitment to Jesus in baptism, surrounded by the joyful celebration of fellow believers from various places.

Nicola Cippone baptism

Nicola Cippone (left) and Chris Riddle (right) pray for Luigi prior to his baptism. His friend Francesco stands behind. Courtesy of Willard & Eva Eberly

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