Our personal expenses allow us to continue to live and serve in Italy. This year our personal expenses have increased by about $700 per month with our move from Bobbio to Anagni. This move makes us more centrally located and will decrease our travel expenses over time while making us more available to serve throughout Italy.
In our monthly household budget; rent $650, utilities $125, our food and household cost are about $500 and insurance $300. We continue to live as frugally as possible in order to invest most of the money we raise directly into ministry and outreach. You may not be aware, but we are required by Italy to raise all of our funds and receive no salaries or payments for our services.
The ministry expenses allow us to communicate and travel to our trainings and speak at churches. Many believe traveling in Europe is inexpensive, and this is not true. The high cost of driving begins with $6 per gallon for fuel, and highway tolls can exceed $.10 per mile. Add the fact we rent cars for needed travels, as it is a lower investment than owning a car. Traveling by train and bus adds up quickly with multiple people traveling together.
In our monthly expenses; we allow for approximately $800 per month for travel expenses, about $300 for communications (cell, internet and etc.). That leaves about $300 for other cost such as printing, seminar cost and other miscellaneous expenses related to serving and training others.
Each year we identify specific projects to invest in, on behalf of our Italian partners and churches. This year's project funds are for translating and printing our ILI Training & Facilitation material for disciple making training. This is our top priority. There are very few quality training materials available in Italian, and most Italians don't read or speak English with any great efficiency. Please click HERE for more info of the importance of this project.
There are many challenges with translating the study and training materials. Translating is a very meticulous process when done properly. First, we need to acquire the rights from the American publisher. Our goal is to do this at no expense; no upfront cost or royalties. Secondly, the translations need to be contextually correct. Even though some words translate easily from English to Italian they do not have same meaning. For example if I say "pronto" in American it means let's go quickly, in Italian it simply means I am ready. You could say it's not a verb form at all. There are many other examples contextualization faux pas I have learned the hard way. Once translation is complete you need to have several reviews for not just "speeling" and grammar, but also that pesky context. Then the material needs to be formatted in a European accepted size, which of course differs from the American format. We have five books in our disciple making series Live26 that we want to translate and print this year to train and equip our Italian disciple makers. To see the Live26 training material overview click HERE. To see the cost details on translating and printing project click HERE.