Hello and welcome! We’re Mario and Sheila Scorziello, serving on the mission field of Italy since 1989. We’ve been happily married 40+ years, and have two adult children and nine grandchildren.
I, Sheila, am originally from Michigan. Mario was born here, but raised in the Bronx by non English-speaking parents. Love for the homeland never left his heart, and that tiny village in the lonely mountains of the Salerno province, is now our second home base!
Almost from the start we felt called to serve God as missionaries. Our missions minded church supported many missionaries and they visited regularly. Their testimonies stirred our hearts to give our all to Christ. And for us, that meant the mission field.
We left for the mission field in May of 1989.
Little did we then know that Italy is known as the missionary graveyard.
Or that most missionaries leave after only a few years because of depression, lack of results, bureaucracy, corruption, and cultural difficulties. But God has graciously helped us overcome these difficulties. And because we believe in the power of prayer, we believe he will continue to use us to touch hearts and lives with his Gospel.
We set out with basically nothing. Just two kids and eight suitcases. No support base, no income or money in the bank, no property or assets, and very little cash.
Along our long and varied path of shoestring-budget missionary living, we have moved over 50 times. Living in towns (big and small), villages, and in the countryside. In the regions of Tuscany, Lazio, Campania, Lombardy – and now Abruzzo, plus our summer home in Campania.
And lived in everything from a tarantula-infested camper (shudder) to a tent. And even in an old chicken coop, so cozy the chickens kept returning! We’ve gone without, been abundantly blessed, and learned countless lessons along the way.
It’s been a unique and enriching experience and we’ve learned a lot! Particularly that ours is a call to pastor, disciple, and mentor. And we feel constantly blessed and humbled that God would use two faulty people like us.
We’ve had the blessing and privilege of serving as pastors, teachers, in evangelism, church planting, translating, interpreting, counseling, drug rehabilitation, and in ministry to youth, children, men, women, families, and in jails.
In 1997 Open Door Church in Suffolk Virginia took us under their wing and changed our name to Mission Italia. They have been and continue to be a great source of blessing and encouragement to us. And we are ever so grateful to the church and to our pastors!
Our Current Work
We now divide home between 2 regions. Abruzzo where we live most of the year, and Campania where we spend the summers, in Mario’s ancestral birth home. We encourage and teach the pastors and believers in these areas, as well as in other areas of Italy. While also letting our light shine in our needy areas.
Our summer village has only 4 other believers, not counting a few summer visitors like us. The pastor and his family live about an hour away, and he faithfully makes that trip each and every week.
We are the only born-again believers here in our main town. The nearest church, which we attend, is about 40 minutes away. They are a great support and blessing to us.
Our only desire is to bring God glory. And to continue serving however the Lord chooses. Right into our old age, if he so allows.
We would appreciate your prayers for us and Italy! Thank you!
SPECIAL NOTE: Because this is simply our personal ministry (not a mission organization), we do not offer employment or service opportunities.