Mark – husband, dad of 3 (and 1 adopted boy on the way!), pastor and wanna-be-theologian. Mark is privileged to serve at Nuova Vita church in Bologna and to share many of the truths gleaned from years at Moody Bible Institute, Wheaton Grad School, and College Church. Mark loves to camp and read, especially theologians who have been dead for over a century. Mark’s role model … his dad. Favorite dessert: tiramisù (but like Elianna, also very fond of chocolate).



Ruthi – In Hebrew, Ruth means friendship. I dare say that her parents spoke prophetically when they named her. I’ve never met anyone who exudes mercy and love for others like Ruthi. This quality is clearly an overflow of her love and relationship with Jesus, which is the most import thing to her, and despite the craziness of life and ministry, her honest pursuit of God is a great example and encouragement. Her years as an mk (missionary kid) in west Africa may not have been long, but left an indelible mark: she still lives on “African time”. Ruthi spear headed a ministry called Vite Trasformate – a ministry to reach women trapped in prostitution - which has impacted not only our city of Bologna, but has rippled redemption throughout the country.


Elianna – her middle name is Joy, and that says a lot about her! A bubbly girl and a social magnet (like her mom), Elianna is truly a tangible demonstration of God’s grace to our family. Elianna loves rhythmic gymnastics and being outdoors. She is enjoying second grade. As we walk to school each day, Elianna prays for her teachers and friends. To justify her insane love for chocolate, she reminds people that her dad fed her a chocolate covered strawberry in her first months of life (much to the chagrin of mom!). Elianna’s favorite color is yellow, and her favorite flower is a sunflower.

Gabriel – nothing amuses and entertains Gabriel like a good story. Creativity oozes out of every pore, and he is currently authoring 3 or 4 books. He also loves movies. A lot! He is a great conversation partner, especially for those who like to listen. Gabriel loves to philosophize with dad and cuddle with mom. He is doing well in his swimming class and likes to wear his shark swim-cap (but he is not very intimidating). His favorite books: the Bible and the Chronicles of Narnia.