Dawson Kolstad

Missionary to Rome, Italy


Rome, Italy

Dawson is an American living in Rome, Italy, with his wife, Adriana, where he serves as the worship leader of Hillsong Rome and attends a music university for composition and songwriting. Dawson grew up playing worship music at Westside Community Church in Beaverton, Oregon, where his parents are pastors. This was where he and his eventual band-mates began playing music together. A few years later, they started their own band, Good Friday. Their goal was to write original music that spoke about God, but outside of a worship context, so that they could take this music into areas outside of the church. They recorded two albums and performed this music solely in the Pacific Northwest, until they met A Jesus Mission.

In 2019, the band partnered up with A Jesus Mission to become music missionaries, leading worship for Sunday church services, and then performing rock concerts with their original music as a form of outreach. This year of full-time touring completely changed Dawson’s life, as he felt that this path of ministry was what God had been calling him to for years. But after COVID hit, all tours were canceled, and in this time, he moved to Santa Cruz, California to help a pastor friend, Adam Miller, build a worship team at his new church. So Dawson spent until the end of 2021 building the band at Boulder Creek Community Church and after that, moved to Italy to marry his now-wife, Adriana.

He thought this would be the end of his partnership with A Jesus Mission. But little did he know that Rome is one of the biggest untapped mission fields in Europe. With a shockingly low percentage of people who claim to have a personal relationship with Jesus, Rome is a place in need. Dawson’s wife, Adriana, had been attending one of the few evangelical churches in the city, Hillsong Rome, since they began. But unfortunately as soon as the two arrived from the states, the church had lost its pastors as well as most of its people. The church was about to close its doors when Dawson and Adriana felt a responsibility to fight to keep the church alive. But with very little resources, they realized they could not do it alone. So they have partnered back up with A Jesus Mission in order to reconstruct their church, equipped and supported.

Now just a small group of people, Dawson and Adriana currently direct the creative ministries and aim to help rebuild not only their particular church, but the Church of Rome as a whole.