We are on a train heading for Milan, Italy, leaving Monaco after an eventful day. We stayed the night in Cannes in a clean and wonderful hotel of a Christian couple who allowed us to stay there free of charge. May God bless them for their kindness, as they probably saved the ministry two or three thousand dollars.
The theft of our sound equipment hamstrung us. It left us with only one microphone cable and a very small microphone. The only reason it wasn’t stolen was because Tony had left it taped to the flesh of my chest (something he often does). During the train trip last night, Chris called his family back in the States. One of his little daughters answered the phone and I saw his eyes tear up as he spoke to her. I must have caught the French spirit, because the sight so broke my heart I pounded my chest with emotion as I watched him. Unfortunately, I was still wearing the microphone. It not only broke my heart, but it seems that it also broke the microphone (and left an indent on my chest).
The next day we couldn’t go to Monaco because we needed to find a soldering iron to fix it. We therefore did the main teaching from Cannes (which is on the border of France), and then left after lunch to catch a train to Monaco for interviews.
We had one stop-over in the city of Nice. On the first leg we interviewed two young ladies. One was Italian and the other French.
The second train was seriously delayed and we were in danger of having to abandon visiting that country, so Duane, Chris, I, and a French interpreter jumped into a taxi and drove the distance.
We went directly to the quaintest outdoor shopping center directly opposite the Prince of Monaco’s palace, where, despite the angry weather there was many tourists. We were able to get two good interviews. One was with a colorful Scottish lady and the other with five Canadian teenagers. Just as we ended the second interview there were rolls of thunder, lightning, and it poured with rain.
An hour or so later the rest of the team caught up with us. They joined us under a café’s awning which was already packed with people who were trying to get out of the rain. When Duane whispered, “Do an open air Ray” I told him that it was private property and I would never preach on private property without permission. About a minute later Valentino returned from inside the café and said, “The owner said it is okay.” Huh? That sort of thing just doesn’t happen. So I preached for about five minutes (with a French interpreter) and then interviewed the café’s owner. He wasn’t a Christian but he was open to what I had to say.
It was ironic. The Prince of Monaco flatly refused an on camera interview when I requested one a month earlier, and here I was preaching the gospel less than 100 yards from his palace doorstep, on private property, with permission of the owner. We are praying that the weather will be better in Italy. Please keep us in your prayers.