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Summer Greetings
to our English-speaking friends...

from the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission!

As year 2018 moves quickly along, Domenico and I (Monika), along with our collaborators, send you Summer greetings filled with gratitude for your partnership in the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission, on which we update you below.

We offer a special welcome to those in the Knights of Columbus and those in the Italo-American community who may just be finding out about the Italy Mission. Or perhaps you recently heard a Missions talk about our ministry. If the pioneering work you read about here stirs your interest and strikes you as "good news",
we'd love to hear from you!

The year 2018 has been marked by unusual rhytms due to the loss of one of the Italy Mission's greatest fan, Monika's father Ray, whom we honor here with a photo and with the prayer from his Memorial card:

Ray Wilbur Rodman
15 April 1932 - 18 May 2018

May the Lord support us all the day long,
till the shades lengthen and the evening comes,
 and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over, and our work is done.

Then in His Mercy may He give us a safe lodging,
 and a holy rest and peace at the last.

-  Cardinal John Henry Newman


Is the Italy Mission new to you?
Perhaps you've never heard of after-abortion recovery & healing outreach?
As you consider supporting our work, click here to read the brief history of how we began!

Mini-POSTER: a 1-page summary of our work! (PDF)

Italy...DID YOU KNOW??

To make a donation to the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission, simply click on the Response Form .

Or to Donate by credit card click below:

(NOTE: Transaction will be executed in Euros and is not tax-deductible)


Year 2017 Italy Mission Summary

The year 2017 marked our 7th anniversary, yet sense our work has barely begun, as Italy's religious and secular cultures seem to just be awakening to the reality of after-abortion hurt, the need for healing and the real possibility of experiencing it.

Our Fall 2017 retreat was held on Thanksgiving weekend. While Italy has no such festivity, Gratitude is in fact one of the principal sentiments that our participants (both women and men) express for the companionship, community and concrete assistance they find in the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission, as they embark on or continue their journey toward healing after abortion.

One highlight of this last retreat was personal participation by a psychotherapist and 2 priests, including the past director of the Italian Bishops Conference Family Life Office. He has known us since before we began this work and to this day he remains one of the very few clergy to write publically on the need for post-abortion pastoral care. His encouragement of Domenico and me 8 years ago spurred us on to pioneer this work. Now his heartfelt personal participation in a retreat was not only both a gift to team and retreatants, but may well open up to closer collaboration and some new initiatives in northeast Italy.

Our team member from that area (herself a former participant after a late-term abortion following a poor prenatal diagnosis) is presently completing a 3-year counseling degree and is working to help us pilot in 2018 the Weekly Support Group version of the Rachel's Vineyard healing process, which I led in the San Francisco Bay Area for years and which remains a wonderful alternative for those who can't get away for a 3-day weekend experience. This expanded curriculum is currently my priority translation project.

Year 2017 was about much more than just healing retreats, though!

Babies have been born to former participant couples, and one of our team members and her husband are currently working torward adopting a child.

Summer was a time of particularly intense activity, not only with a full July retreat, but with our first-ever participation in 2 marvelous outreach opportunities:

In June we gave a workshop with a married couple (past retreat participants who shared their testimony) at the annual conference of the "Mistero Grande" marriage ministry, and also offered for 3 days a much-visited info table. The name of this ministry is taken from St. Paul (Ephesians 5:32), who calls Christian marriage a "great mystery", referring to it as an ongoing incarnation of the love relationship between Christ and his Church, a relationship called to reflect that love and make it present in the world. This pioneering marriage preparation and enrichment program is an Italian inculturation of an Anglican initiative started in Britain. It has ecumenical ties, which are a unique blessing for Italy! One of our clergy collaborators (pictured below) is also active with this ministry and with Retrouvaille (an international program for marriages in crisis).

June 2017, Rome
Italy Mission leaders Monika and Domenico with priest Fr. Rito (blue shirt) and former participants,
a married couple, after our workshop given at the June 2017 "Mistero Grande"
Marriage Preparation and Enrichment National Conference

A couple attending the workshop that day, thanks to their priest's invitation,
participated in our July retreat after a late-term "therapeutic" abortion,
and our November retreat included another married couple who learned of us through the same conference.


Italy Mission founder and director Monika Rodman Montanaro with our Franciscan collaborator, fra Daniele
September 2017

"We have been called to heal wounds, to unite what has fallen apart,
and to bring home those who have lost their way."

- St. Francis of Assisi

In September, thanks to another clergy collaborator (a Franciscan friar in Bologna pictured above) and the Poor Clare sisters in Bologna's city center, together with over 15 past participants who came from all over Italy we did a 3-day outreach at the  huge Franciscan Festival in Bologna's Center Square, Piazza Maggiore. For this event we developed new materials to reach the many attendees in this, Italy's most prominent university city (think Berkeley back in the 70's combined with today's organic, slow-food culture). The ethos there remains strongly anti-clerical, and while many reject "the Church" in favor of a hyper-secular social-welfare State, almost all love St. Francis as a symbol of a "different" sort of Christianity.

Our exhibit (twice this size on a highly visible corner) offered not only printed materials
but also a chance to be cared for with a drop of handcream or a spray of rosewater.

Our team of ambassadors (all former participants) often ended up speaking at length with passers-by,
who on numerous occasions were stunned that our volunteers had been through the abortion experience themselves
and were now willing to talk about it in such a way that might bring hope to others.


Monika and Domenico with past-participant ambassadors at Bologna's Franciscan Festival
(individuals, 2 married couples and a father-daughter team)
September 2017

Aerial view of Bologna, Italy

2017: New friends and a special farewell!

July 2017
Monika and Domenico meet the Poor Clares at their convent in Bologna's city center
before the July retreat
The sisters (here only 3 of the community's 8 women) are cloistered but by no means cut off from the world!
They helped sponsor our outreach at the September 2017 Franciscan Festival.

"Grazie, sorelle!"

Mons. John Cihak is a priest from the Archdiocese of Portland
who worked in Rome for over 8 years and returned Stateside at Christmas.
His extensive experience in post-abortion pastoral care
included participation in numerous Rachel's Vineyard retreats in Oregon.
Monika was annually invited to join him in speaking to Italian and international clergy
doing ongoing formation in family life ministry.

Thank you, Father John,
for your tremendous encouragement and support of our pioneering work here in Italy!

We will miss you greatly and wish you every grace and blessing as you return to serve in Oregon!

Looking for a Rachel's Vineyard Retreat in the U.S.??
Click here!

Other 2017 Italy Mission activities

The month of May marked our 3rd annual mission trip to Rome for a day of outreach at Italy's March for Life. The day was well worth the effort! Several religious sisters (two of whom have also participated in our retreat) joined past participants (single and married) in distributing materials before, during and after the walk.

Rome, May 2017
The past participant in this photo that day told Domenico of physical healings
which she attributes to the inner healing experienced through Rachel's Vineyard.
Such stories are not uncommon.
One of the 2 religious sisters in the above photo is a psychologist and hopes to begin collaborating with us in 2018.

The former participant 
in the above photo said that in the year since the retreat, her personal physician, whom she used to visit frequently with various problems, had run into her and joked she must have changed doctors because he'd not seen her for so long! Such can be the remarkable effect of resolving old hurts such as abortion wounds, and we rejoice to hear such stories! Having finally made peace with God, herself, and her never-born child, this former participant now radiates joy and tranquillity and is continuing with diligence the spiritual path on which she's embarked. She has also helped a couple of other ladies participate by offering financial aid for program fees.

March 2017 Rome seminar "The Experience of Abortion"
Italy Mission founder and director Monika Rodman Montanaro with 2 collaborators.
Several former participants of our program attended this public event and spoke of their experience.

In March 2017 a former retreat participant and one of our collaborating psychologists joined Monika for a public event sponsored by Rome's John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family. Under a newly appointed president, the Institute is currently in transition, so the event represented an opportunity to continue cultivating our 5-year relationship with this graduate school that trains clergy and laity from Italy and other countries.

Ever wonder why??
You may notice we post very few photos
of our team members and participants. 

We'd love to publish more, but we are extremely respectful of people's privacy and only publish photos if all subjects have agreed for their image to appear on the internet. Many - even some of our most dedicated team members- understandably prefer to retain their anonymity.
While some past  participants feel called to later speak publicly of their abortion experience and healing,
we never push such a move, but encourage prudent discernment of any such decision.

In February 2017 Monika was in California helping her father with medical treatments and took advantage of the opportunity to join Rachel's Vineyard foundress Dr. Theresa Burke, who came from Philadelphia to give two talks at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress. The three days spent together offered a long overdue chance to share experiences and exchange ideas.

In the summer of 2017 Monika was blessed to be invited for a missionary speaking engagement in San Diego (her birthplace). The reflection given at homily time at all 6 English and Spanish Masses also became an occasion to promote the diocese's own long-active post-abortion healing ministry, and several women stayed after services or returned in the evening to speak about their own need to reconcile past abortions.

"Thank you" to the Diocese of San Diego Missions office
for allowing the work of the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission to be shared in 2016, 2017 and 2018!

Diocesan Missions Coop

Monika with fellow missioners and staff at San Diego's diocesan Missions Office, under the leadership of Fr. Joe Miller, SVD

What Pope Francis has said of "mission" work is certainly truly of the Italy Mission:

"Mission is never the fruit of a perfectly planned program or a well-organized manual.
Mission is always the fruit of a life which knows what it is to be found and healed, encountered and forgiven.
Mission is born of a constant experience of God's merciful anointing..."
- Pope Francis, 23 Sep 2015 Homily at the Canonization of Junipero Serra, father of the California missions

In the words of those we serve:

"The whole experience, while in some ways extremely difficult,
was unforgettably beautiful and went far above and beyond my expectations."

- A 2017 retreat participant

"I'd like to take part in your retreat to better be able to help the many women who confess this sin, this wound, this problem. With the Pope's authorization many people are deciding to confess it - here at our church (NB: a Marian pilgrimage site in N. Italy) we are seeing greatly increased numbers, including penitents who aborted 50 years ago and those who'd never confessed this before. I realize confession alone isn't sufficient, though. And I feel I don't know how to really help them because I see they need something more, something deeper that I can't offer them."

An Italian priest in his 50's

Our Dominican priest collaborator Fr. Cristiano is from Brasil but has served in Italy for over 25 years.
Despite having been transferred from Bologna, he continues his work with us.

Please read of one of the fruits of Fr. Cristiano's work:

Elena's Story

Fr. Cristiano serves at Milan's famous church, the Basilica of Santa Maria delle Grazie. It's most well known for being the home of Leonardo DaVinci's painting, The Last Supper, so many people think of this church as a tourist destination, but it's also a vibrant Christian community in an affluent Milan neighborhood (Domenico tells me the corporate offices of Fendi handbags face the basilica!).

Stumbling into a confessional at this very church in the summer of 2016Elena met Fr. Cristiano and discovered the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission. At age 53, but still mother to a young child, she was at the end of her rope trying to deal with a decades-delayed reaction to the trauma of an abortion undergone at age 16 plus the realization that the fertility clinic (in Spain) that had more than once used donated eggs to produce her 5 year-old daughter had also discarded multiple embryos. A breast cancer diagnosis and 2 years of treatment had lead her to reflect on all this in a new light.

Elena hadn't practiced the faith since her teen years. Her husband of 10 years was nearing the end of his patience with her emotional outbursts and psychological fragility, so Elena's only hope was to return to her psychotherapist (which we certainly didn't discourage).

She recalls:

"I entered Father Cristiano's church totally at the end of my rope. I was a wreck and I thought they were going to take my daughter from me. My husband didn't know how to help me - he was losing his patience for my yelling and other erratic behaviors. We were both exhausted and didn't know where to turn."

Fr. Cristiano spoke at length with Elena and told her about Rachel's Vineyard. She called us immediately and I had several lengthy phone conversations with her during the summer. Another post-abortive team member, who's also dealt with infertility, companioned her, as well.

One month after participating in the November 3-day retreat with her husband, Elena wrote:

"The days in Bologna were a marvelous grace that has given me a new way of looking at my entire life.
If the Lord has taken me by the hand and brought me to to point of being able to meet all of you, it means that maybe I deserve another chance and I want with all my heart to seize it.
Alfredo and I feel very close and it seems to me we're finally looking in a common direction.
It's so beautiful to go to Mass on Sunday with our daughter, who, we've discovered, goes there with joy!
She also asks us to pray with her before bedtime..."

Early in 2017 the couple participated in the 4th day of their retreat and continued to reap the blessings of hope restored. Then Elena's husband was transferred to work in North Africa and the entire family made the move. Elena remains in contact with other women from her retreat and the family continues their practice of the Christian faith. Her husband sent a gift to help us with our Fall 2017 outreach at Bologna's Franciscan Festival. His brief message? "We will always be grateful to you!"

It's been your prayers and financial support, together with the remarkable commitment by our Italy retreat team (priests and past-participants) that have allowed us to reach those like Elena.

Your gift during 2018 will help us not only help individual women,
but offer marriage-saving help to families like Elena's!

Seven years after launching this Mission, we remain Italy's first and only Christian post-abortion healing ministry approved by the Catholic Church. While we operate with the blessing of one of Italy's most important dioceses (that of Bologna), no Italian diocese, religious community, pro-life or other organization has yet stepped up to sponsor this Mission. We are still a very small seed planted in a field of vast need, yet we are resolved to help this seed continue to grow, with your prayers and assistance!

The Year 2018 Response Form details how to make a tax-deductible Gift to the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission, to be sent by check to my father, who will forward all gifts to Colorado. 

Those who wish to make a credit card donation (and our few English-speaking friends here in Europe) may instead make a (non-tax-deductible) donation to the Italy Mission by PayPal. Such a gift will be deposited in Euros directly into our Italian account dedicated exclusively to this apostolate.

In short, we hope that in the Year 2018 you will renew - or begin - your partnership in the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission!

To make a donation to the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission, simply click on the Response Form .

Or to Donate by credit card click below:

(NOTE: Transaction will be executed in Euros and is not tax-deductible)

Further reading:

Italian women and men share their abortion stories
Meet some of those we've served in these first years of the Italy Mission....

St. John Paul II's "Special Word to Women" who have had abortions

These words
, by now well known in American Church and pro-life circles, remain largely unknown here in Italy, even among clergy. So much so that we continue to distribute a lovely postcard designed for posting on bulletin boards
at parishes and hospital chapels.

Reaching "Rachel" in Italy: The Cultural Context

PRAYER for the Italy Mission
Please share with friends and family!

NOTE: While Facebook shares are appreciated, all communications to Italy Mission director Monika Rodman Montanaro should be sent via email to: mimmont@hotmail.com

Highlights from the Italy Mission Archives:

Our current team includes at least 12 members
serving in various capacities before, during and after 3-day retreats.

7 Things We've Learned these first 7 Years:

1) As our faithful Dominican priest collaborator Fr. Cristiano often marvels, "the method works!"
It's not just the American-style self-help program many Italians imagined when we began our activities in 2010, but an internationally tested instrument for helping deeply wounded souls - women, men and couples together - open up to the truth of their own life story and the grace of God's saving power within that story. A particular strength of this "method" is the intense collaboration of former particpants (now leaders) from various regions of Italy,
who exercise a critical, complementary role alongside Domenico and me, our priests and team psychologist.

2) The Holy Spirit is working powerfully through the internet!
At least 80% of our inquiries come directly from that source. We marvel at the deep degree to which many women and men open up in email correspondence and phone appointments. Our team members are always ready to talk with someone who might express desire for a contact in his or her area or with a particular experience. (One of our team members is available particularly for those who've been through late-term "therapeutic" abortion as she has.) This is essentially a new, itinerant model of pastoral care, which makes multiple offices unnecessary and yet allows us to quite closely companion individuals all over Italy in the months before and after retreat participation. Help is offered over time even to those who haven't yet committed to a retreat.

3) Bologna, with its central location, remains in many ways an ideal hub for us.
The women and men who travel from near or far to make a Rachel's Vineyard retreat in Bologna experience the sacrifices involved in that journey as a true "pilgrimage", which is already a strong element of Italian spirituality. Recently deceased bishop Cardinal Carlo Caffarra more than once reaffirmed his appreciation of Rachel's Vineyard, noting in a meeting with his Clergy Council our apostolate's activities as one of the highlights of his years as bishop there.  We are working to earn similar trust, as well as the beginnings of some local financial support, as we cultivate a relationship with the new bishop.

The Rachel's Vineyard model of post-abortion care is particularly well-suited to a country like Italy, where the Church has not yet found a voice to publicly issue a reconciling invitation to Her many sons and daughters who've participated in abortion.  After 35 years of legal abortion (which the Italian populace voted for by referendum), there are still no diocesan post-abortion pastoral programs such as those active in the United States and elsewhere. Furthermore, in the States almost all clergy have long had the faculties to deal with the canon law aspects of abortion during a normal confession. In Italy the matter is more strictly treated and generally until 2016 remained reserved to the Bishop and his collaborating penitenzieri (confessors in the cathedral), to the clergy in Rome, as well as the mendicant clergy (Franciscans, Dominicans, etc). Some of our participants have literally rung the doorbell at the Bishop's office, or have had their parish priest tell them to come back in a week or at the end of the month to receive absolution. Others have been "welcomed" in confession with the words, "You're very fortunate to have come to me.... this is an extremely grave sin and not all priests can absolve it."  In such a context, our patient listening over weeks and months, with an invitation to be fully reconciled through a program that carries the universal Church's blessing, is truly "GOOD NEWS"!

5) While some naysayers continue to assert that "the family" and "the confessional" remain the only appropriate places to reveal an abortion experience, those who request our assistance often say they are unable to reveal their true struggles in the family (or their effort to do so hasn't been fruitful), and that even multiple confessions haven't yielded the deeply felt sense of forgiveness and reconciliation they need. This is often the case even after psychotherapy. Our team's support, sometimes including local clergy or psychotherapist referrals and ideally culminating in the 3-day retreat experience, fills that gap.

6) One element of our work remains particularly challenging: the difficulty in finding mental health professionals to volunteer with our team on the 3-day retreats. The mutual alienation and prejudices (sometimes downright hostility) between "faith" and "psychology" are much stronger in Italy than what I encountered in the U.S. In addition, Italian socialism has thwarted the development of a vigorous spirit of unpaid volunteerism like that which is still strong in the States. Here  we struggle to find collaborating psychologists. We rejoice that our first psychologist has returned to service after a "1st year of marriage" sabbatical (she says she missed her work with us!), and we are glad to be discussing collaboration with 2 other Catholic psychologists. Please pray for this ongoing need!

7) There is NO substitute for the precious personalized "companioning" (Pope Francis and the Italian Church would say "accompaniment") that our team members who are former participants can give to those newly arrived in Rachel's Vineyard. We thank God every day for our team and for you who pray for and support this apostolate!

Check out the YouTube channel we pioneered in 2014 and continue to build!
It now includes 25 videos including Italy's first-ever testimonies of abortion hurt and healing, together with videos (ranging in length from 1 to 30 minutes) by clergy and psychotherapists who explain the abortion wound, invite those affected to reach out for help, and encourage steps toward recovery and reconciliation.

Testimonies by our past participants
given at the 2015 Marcia per la vita in Rome - a first for Italy!!

Brother Evagrio's Story
(given May 2015, Rome March for Life)

          Pina's Story                     Daniela's Story
                                                          (not translated here but published in an Italian family life magazine)

 Spring 2014 Mission Update: Reaching out to ecclesial and pro-life leaders (Easter 2014)

Thanksgiving 2013 Mission update: Meet our team! (November 2013)

Spring 2013 Mission Update: Pope Francis and Mission in the 21st Century (Pentecost 2013)

Photo by lapresse.it

Reading to dive deeper:
 Europe's Down Syndrome "Thought Police"
In recent years we've had increasing requests for help from women and couples who aborted a child with health problems, most often Down Syndrome. It's truly "open season" on these children, ironically in a time when "disability rights" are gaining visibility everywhere but in the womb. This news report shows how far Europe will go to censor any message that might touch on the post-abortion trauma many of these moms and dads carry inside.

Choosing forgiveness, even when it comes to abortion
A mother recalls being a senior in college, pregnant and tempted to abort her now 8 year-old child. Written in light of
Pope Francis' permanent expansion of priestly faculties to lift any abortion excommunication 

My burden lifted forever
Released in Advent 2015, this post-abortion conversion story is by a British author who overcame a difficult childhood (parents divorced and mother turned Buddhist, uncle in the British Humanist League) to become a Catholic apologist, now equipped with a doctorate in philosophy from Oxford. Her story also points to the need of so many women and men to continue a journey of inner healing even after celebrating the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

What Happens When People Share Their Abortion Stories

Cullen Herout, June 9, 2016
The Federalist
Written by a mental health professional who for 5 years has served in Rachel's Vineyard

Why We Should Welcome Abortion Narratives (30 April 2014, First Things)
A society growing toward greater maternal support and respect for the dignity of all human life needs these narratives, even the ones that do not end in remorse. By giving women narrative, they are empowered in precisely the way their pregnancies left them feeling powerless. And they encourage those of us in the pro-life movement to view the woman with full sympathy.


For Italy aficionados:

Italy: First in the Historic Reversal of Populations
Joseph Chamie, former Director of the U.N. Population Division (August 9, 2016)

In 1995 Italy became the world's 1st country with fewer children than elderly in the population.

2015: the year when Italy's demographic malaise become apparent (26 February 2016, MercatorNet.com from Australia)

Italy is a "dying country" (13 February 2015, The Guardian)
More articles on Italy's demographic crisis below...

More Italian Women are Choosing to Have No Children (22 April 2014, Wall Street Journal)
While this article naturally focuses on economic forces leading to the choice of childlessness, we hear the very personal stories of past abortions contributing to a sense of unworthiness to become a mother. Imagine the pain as women hit age 45 realizing they aborted the only child they will ever carry. And imagine the family wound as others approach 35 or 40 still living with the mother who years ago encouraged them to abort and now continually asks when they will produce a grandchild. One of our women reponded to such a mother, who'd twice convinced her (at age 24 and 26) she was "too young" to have a child: "I gave you two grandchildren but you sent them away."

The "Nonna" State (15 June 2012, Wall Street Journal)
In the beaten-down economies of Italy and Spain, the force to reckon with is the army of grandparents who form an invisible safety net helping young people make ends meet.

Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission founders Monika Rodman Montanaro (California, USA) and Domenico Montanaro (Puglia, Italy)

The Origins of the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission

In 2007 Monika Rodman, former coordinator of Respect Life Ministry and Post-abortion Healing Ministry in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Oakland, CA, married her Italian husband Domenico Montanaro and moved to Italy. It was Domenico's encouragement that led the couple in 2010 to pioneer Italy's first Christian ministry for healing after abortion, a ministry active since the 1980's in the United States (both in Catholic and other Christian communities) but truly a novelty in Italy.

Together with our Italian collaborators, we labor in this Mission in the spirit of the New Evangelization called for by St. John Paul II, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and now Pope Francis.  However you discovered the Italy Mission, we welcome you!

"Abortion compounds the grief of many women who now carry with them deep physical and spiritual wounds after succumbing to the pressures of a secular culture which devalues God’s gift of sexuality and the right to life of the unborn.”

- Pope Francis, 25 April 2014, ad limina visit from Southern Africa's bishops

Italy... DID YOU KNOW??

Maybe you recently visited Italy and took home our Prayer Cards from the U.S. Bishops Visitors Office in Rome.

Perhaps you have a heart for proclaiming in a non-traditional missionary context the Good News of God's saving Mercy. Post-Christian Europe is certainly one such mission land and the experience of abortion is a wound that often leads to what our women and men often call a "spiritual divorce" from God and from the Christian community.

You may be of Italian heritage and are pained to learn that marriage, traditional family life and practice of the Christian faith are quickly dying out in this, Europe's most rapidly aging nation, where single child families have become the norm.

Perhaps you have a strong commitment to human life, and a deep desire to offer healing balm to those carrying the pain of motherhood lost and fatherhood aborted. It may be through 
the Knights of Columbus, the Italian Catholic Federation or another Italian-American association that you learned of our Mission. We would be so very grateful to welcome you as partners!

And some of you have personally benefitted from Rachel's Vineyard, having found there your own deep healing after the experience of abortion.  In learning how unique the Church's post-abortion healing ministries are to the United States, you now desire to extend the same healing opportunity to women and men in a post-abortion Mission country.

Q&A with Testimonies for those wanting to learn more!

Italian HOME page / Sito italiano
click here

Your Partnership in the Italy Mission

Whatever has led to you to this Italy Mission, know that we are grateful for your interest in our apostolate. We hope you will become a fellow gardener in this Vineyard, whether through prayer, a financial gift or telling others about our work.

Each Rachel's Vineyard site, including ours, must be financially self-sustaining. Your donations make our work possible as they help defray infrastructure costs we are not yet able to cover through program fees and Italian donations. While the recently deceased  Cardinal of Bologna (where we offer the retreats) had personally blessed our ministry, that blessing has not yet included any form of financial support. Those Italians who do financially support this ministry are most all former participants joined by a few clergy.

Since 2009 Rachel's Vineyard of Colorado, while not directing any of its own funds to the Italy Mission, has graciously assisted us by facilitating our friends' restricted giving for this Italy Mission. It has been the sacrificial gifts of individuals, families and Knights of Columbus Councils that have helped make possibile our first five years of activity. 

To clarify: We receive NO FUNDING from Rachel's Vineyard of Colorado, nor from Rachel's Vineyard headquarters in Philadelphia, nor from Rachel's Vineyard's parent organization Priests for Life.

We would be honored to have you join our family of supporters! To make a tax-deductible donation in the United States, through the registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization "Rachel's Vineyard of Colorado", click here.

From 2012 through 2017 our American family of financial supporters averaged an annual total of 21 households and two Knights of Columbus Councils (Council 5300 Goleta Valley, CA and Council 6143, Pleasanton, CA).

Our goal for 2018 is to grow our number of American supporters to 30 familiesWe would welcome your personal participation to help us reach this goal. Our family of supporters, while predominantly Catholic, includes Christian believers of various denominations, and we are grateful for those mission partners who, like us, believe Christ is honored when His Body, the Church, reaches out ecumenically with the Good News.

In 2018 we also hope to add 2 new organizations (including at least one new Knights of Columbus Council) to our family of supporters. 

Our hoped-for partnership with one or more Italian-American organizations has thus far remained elusive. If you are involved in the Italian American community, might you be able to help us form one such partnership in 2018?

To make a donation to the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission, simply click on the Response Form and mail your financial gift to Tara, my stateside collaborator (and former Oakland RV team member) who records and forwards all gifts to our sponsor agency.

Questions? Please email Italy Mission coordinator Monika Rodman Montanaro at mimmont@hotmail.com.

Good Shepherd Prayer for the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission
Prodigal Prayer for the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission

Additional Articles:

ZENIT interview, "Healing Italy's Abortion Survivors" (Oct. 22, 2010)

Diocese of Oakland Voice article,"East Bay link nurtures ministry to Italian Catholics" (June 6, 2011)

Reaching "Rachel" in Italy: The Cultural Context (updated June 2013)


Saint John Paul II's "Special Word to Women" who have had abortions (from Evangelium vitae, 1995)

To Donate by credit card click below:

(NOTE: Transaction will be executed in Euros and is not tax-deductible)

Click here for:

Knights of Columbus information

  Diocesan Missions Coop

Italian-Americans interested in this Mission

Q&A/FAQ with Testimonies for potential Italy Mission partners

Blessing of Cardinal Renato Raffaele Martino,

President Emeritus, Vatican Congregation for Justice and Peace:

Cardinal Martino's Italian letter

English translation of Cardinal Martino's endorsement

Personal recommendation of Monika and the Italy Mission
addressed in 2007 to the Italian Bishops by

Most Reverend Allen H. Vigneron, presently Archbishop of Detroit

(Bishop Vigneron was pastor of the Diocese of Oakland, CA during the final years of Monika Rodman's 12-year full-time tenure there)

To receive a copy of our current Business Plan, entitled "Promoting the New Evangelization in Italy through Post-abortion Healing," email Monika Rodman Montanaro at mimmont@hotmail.com.

Thank you for your prayers for, and partnership in, the Rachel's Vineyard Italy Mission!

© 2009-2018 Monika Rodman, Vigna di Rachele/Rachel's Vineyard Ministries™. Tutti i diritti riservati.