Sliding her carabiner with her, Matti stepped carefully along a narrow ledge, chattering all the while. Inch-thick metal cables run through fat metal anchors hammered into the cliff wall protected us from any long falls that might happen as we hiked these trails from the WWI era. From broad and barely sloped to almost vertical, from beautiful vistas to lightless tunnels, this via ferrata adventure across from Tre Cime (Drei Zinnen, Three Peaks) in the Italian Dolomites thrilled most of us, and our friend Ciely who’s visiting for a couple months.

Those are the amazing moments that punctuate everyday life at the foot of the Alps, where God has been graciously answering your prayers for restoration of our hearts and healing of our marriage in the wake of so many moves. Though we are not finished moving (we don’t think!) and still ask that you’d join us in requesting patience in the waiting and wisdom in the deciding, we’re thankful for God’s obvious work this past month.

We thank Him also for two passionate women who’ve asked Donna to disciple them. In a world filled with trouble and wrong, the growing light of Jesus in these gals provides huge encouragement. Please pray that God would reveal Himself and His truth to them as they study, and become even more their teacher, guide and constant companion.

Our friend Ciely who graduated last spring from WY Catholic College has folded into the family between her own jaunts to spartan races in Malta and Sparta, Greece. Our girls love listening to her read (especially Gollum’s voice in Lord of the Rings!), harvesting chestnuts and bouncing on the trampoline with her, and all the other things siblings do. She is a true blessing to us and to others whose children she’s also watched.

Even among so many wonderful things, the railroad tracks of life continue. Running alongside all these and the joy of Rich’s parents visiting, we still feel daily the pang of a family who continue to refuse reconciliation but whose lives are intertwined with ours through both church and swimming. Please pray for God’s hand in a resolution that glorifies Him. And let us know how we may sharpen the aim of the prayer arrows we shoot on your behalf as well.

Ciely stages an attack at an entrance to the tunnels

Evening in the Dolomites