Spiritual Search Opens Doors to Ministry

  • by Jessica Wicks

On the outside, Ania Malpass had it all together. Each Sunday growing up, she had gone to church, and she and her husband had moved to the United States from England for a promising business opportunity. They had 2 children and lived in a beautiful suburban neighborhood north of Atlanta.

But on the inside, Ania was in turmoil.  She had many questions about God, and when the World Trade Center buildings fell, she began to seriously ask, "Who is God?"

When a friend invited her to a women's Bible study, she easily agreed to come.

The Bible study was led by Debbie McGoldrick, a staff member with Priority Associates, a ministry of Cru. After the Bible study, Debbie explained to Ania how to have a personal relationship with Christ, and that day Ania prayed and received Christ's forgiveness.

"What I hadn't understood," says Ania, "was this concept [that God's forgiveness is] a gift. It's there for me to open and receive it."

But Ania still had many questions. So she agreed to go through a series of lessons called Practical Christian Living, led by Debbie's friend, Nancy Pillat. She learned the answers to many of her questions, and quickly grew in her trust in the Lord.

"She can't stop talking about her faith," says Debbie. "There is such a vibrant enthusiasm about Christ. She's so teachable and pliable."

As her questions were answered, Ania wanted to help others find answers too.

"I have a responsibility to share the message," says Ania. "Now I'm always looking for opportunities."

Ania was able to invite 3 friends -- Maria, Sylvia and Cathy -- to the Bible study. Eventually 2 started new relationships with Christ, and the 3rd recommitted her life to Him. Today Ania leads these 3 women through the same Bible studies that Nancy taught her.

"Learning through the others' questions and responses to Scripture has been very rewarding," says Ania. "If I was just reading and studying on my own I wouldn't gain a fraction of what I get out of the group."

And Ania hopes these women will help answer someone else's questions.