Training men to rightly handle the Word of God is a process that takes diligence and patience, but the fruit of those efforts is praiseworthy and glorious. Luigi is a prime example of the impact theological training can have in the life of a student and his church.
“The practice, the discovery, the work, the challenge, at understanding and unearthing the single God-intended meaning of a particular passage of God’s Word is simply beyond description.” Johnny Gravino, dean of Italian Theological Academy (ITA), knows well the importance of training men to lead the church. He understands that it’s not a quick and easy process, but one that takes time and patience for both the teacher and the student.
Johnny also knows the joy of seeing the men he trains grow in their understanding of God’s Word and how to accurately teach its truth to the people of God. Recently, a group of students at ITA entered their second phase of training, an important transition where the men learn by way of practice how to craft and deliver an expository sermon. Johnny calls this training “basic boot camp in expository preaching.” It gives the students the opportunity to take the theoretical and interpretive principles they learned in their first year of training and apply them to actual passages of the Bible in preparation for their sermon. It’s an exciting time for the teachers and the students.
One recruit in ITA’s preaching boot camp is Luigi, who like many in Italy grew up in a Roman Catholic family. His training has helped him discover the errors in his former way of thinking and has shown him the joy of rightly understanding God’s Word. As he works through this second phase of training, Luigi tells of how he’s grown through this process. “Year two at ITA has allowed me to see the fundamental importance of the Biblical text. I need to understand the text and approach it through my exegesis, rather than my random observations and personal opinions of the text.” He added, “I now realize that my method of study before was polluted by my thoughts, thoughts derived from my Roman Catholic tradition, and evangelical tradition, and my own opinions. My training at ITA has allowed me to be renewed in my mind (Rom 12:2).”
I now realize that my method of study before was polluted by my thoughts, thoughts derived from my Roman Catholic tradition, and evangelical tradition, and my own opinions. My training at ITA has allowed me to be renewed in my mind
Luigi is a great example of the type of impact The Master’s Academy International’s (TMAI) training centers are having in the lives of students, as well as the impact the student’s training can have in his life and ministry. Keep Luigi, his classmates at ITA, as well as the faculty and staff in your prayers. Again, training men to rightly handle the Word of God and to shepherd a church takes time and patience. Still, the fruits of that labor—as Luigi is already beginning to see—are incredible.
Thank you for helping train the next generation of church leaders in Italy and around the globe. If you would like to receive a full report of how TMAI is impacting the world for Christ, we would be happy to send you our latest TMAI Global Impact Report in the mail for free. Get your free copy here.