THE GOSPEL PREACHED IN ROME
What an incredible privilege it was to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ in Rome last month. During the two-day Noi Festival, more than 18,000 people heard the Good News—and the Holy Spirit drew more than a thousand of them to respond to “the message of this salvation” (Acts 13:26, ESV). Many more heard the Gospel proclaimed as they watched online.
I’ve been to Rome many times over the years, but this is the first time we were able to hold a Crusade there. The hunger among the Italian people to hear God’s Word was incredible.
For months, Christians from more than 800 evangelical churches throughout Italy prayed and prepared for this Gospel outreach.
In the week leading up to the event, we also hosted Preach the Word, a daylong pastor’s conference on evangelism that was led by my good friend Skip Heitzig. Over 250 Christian leaders from more than 10 denominations came together from Pordenone in the north, near the Austrian border, to Puglia in the south, close to the heel of Italy’s boot.
The conference was a historic gathering. Leaders told us that this kind of unity hasn’t been seen before across their nation’s churches. They were thrilled to come together for worship, fellowship, and Biblical sessions on sermon preparation, expository preaching, and evangelism. We thank God for the great encouragement it was to them in their ministries.
Between both nights of the Festival, over 150 buses brought people from as far as six hours away to the Palazzo dello Sport—Roma. When I gave the invitation to receive Jesus Christ in repentance and faith, Lucia* and her 11-year-old daughter Bria* were among those who walked forward.
Lucia—a single mom—lives in a neighbourhood right next to the Palazzo. When she heard there was a free event there, she decided to take Bria out for the evening. God worked in her heart as she listened to the Good News, and she walked to the front to talk to one of our prayer counsellors. Lucia shared that she was a cancer survivor, and she often struggled with loneliness—but now she was ready to surrender to the One who promises, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5, NKJV). The Lord also worked in Bria’s heart, and she said a prayer of repentance and faith.
Benito* and Manuel* also decided to attend at the last minute. The young men were in Rome for the weekend as tourists, and when they heard about a free concert, they decided to check it out. We praise God that the men stayed to hear the Gospel—and it changed their hearts and lives. Both walked forward to talk to Fabio, one of our prayer counsellors, and surrendered their lives to the Lord. Fabio enthusiastically answered their questions and stood alongside them as they prayed. “God is good,” he shared later. “I’m sure that I did almost nothing, but it was the Holy Spirit here. The Holy Spirit is the person that moved everything tonight.”
Christmas at The Library
CELEBRATING THE GOOD NEWS OF GREAT JOY
Christmas at the Library recently opened, welcoming guests from all across the country to this annual celebration of Jesus Christ’s birth. Please pray for each man, woman, and child who visits during December. Each of them will have the opportunity to hear about the Saviour of the world: “When the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption” (Galatians 4:4–5, ESV).
If you have never come for this special event, consider planning a trip this year. It’s the perfect opportunity to share the Gospel with your friends and family members who are far from the Lord.
As you celebrate what happened in Bethlehem 2,000 years ago, will you also join me in ongoing prayer for Israel? There are so many hurting, grieving people who need to hear about the Lord’s love for them—on both sides of the conflict. Please “pray for the peace of Jerusalem” (Psalm 122:6, NKJV) and that God would draw men, women, and children in Israel to Himself. I hope you and your loved ones enjoy a Christmas season filled with the Lord’s peace and presence.
May God richly bless you,
Franklin Graham | President & CEO
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