An Interview With

Michael Svolto

Mike was born in a small town where if your name didn’t end with a vowel you were a minority. However, his was the only Italian family on Norwood Avenue, and the neighbors learned from them a whole new dimension of family and celebration.

His journey toward ministry began as a little 5-year old boy when he somehow discovered that priests heard from God and so he thought he’d be one someday. Then he discovered they didn’t marry and since he didn’t think he’d learn Latin, he thought he’d be a farmer. At 9 he was an accomplished daydreamer with a run-away imagination so he thought he’d be writer, but then at 11 he thought he’d be an artist, sold two paintings by age 13 for double the asking price and felt a sense of accomplishment he’d never known. He finally quit thinking so hard and joined the Air Force at age 19. 

And then it happened: At age 21, he went on a Pentecostal retreat in the mountains of Baggiao during his tour in the Philippines. A Korean brother laid hands on him and prayed, and Mike began speaking a language he’d never learned (something he wished would’ve happened with he Latin at age 7!) He discovered hearing the voice of God and in the 70’s, learned from such men as Jamie Buckingham, Derek Prince, Don Finto, Kenneth Hagin, John Osteen and a few priests who really did hear from God.

After being uniquely introduced to Donna in 1978, they were married and Mike became the instant father of two daughters. The next year he completed Bible school in Tulsa, Oklahoma, was hired by the Tennessee Department of Corrections supervising juveniles, and in July 1982, Shekinah Rose was born. 20 years of ministry later, in 2002 he and Donna spent six months with YWAM in Italy and Albania. They now have three sons-in-laws, four grandchildren (and counting), and many discoveries to still make.

What quality/trait do you admire most? 

Humility and humor.


Computer glitches.

Most traumatic experience: 

Chased by a big dog.

Favourite Websites: and

Some of your biggest mistakes: 

Not sure—maybe too painful to recall.

Favourite Vacation Spot: 

Assisi, Italy.

Dream Job: 

Photo Journalist / story teller.

Favourite TV shows, Books or Movies: 

Indiana Jones, Back to the Future, It’s a Wonderful Life.


Time in the garden


Ray Hughes and Lindell Cooley worship music. 

Favourite Food: 

Many, mostly Italian.




Donna Svolto is a native Nashvillian who graduated from David Lipscomb High School In 1962. She has a B.A. from Tennessee Tech University in secondary education with an English Major. Donna is married to Mike Svolto and has three daughters and six grandchildren. 

She worked for two decades with colleges and universities including Vanderbilt University and Nashville State Tech. From 1982 through 1995 Donna work as a free-lance proofreader/research and development/copy editor with Thomas Nelson Publishers in their Bible Publishing and Bible Reference Materials division. 

She also worked for several ministries as support staff, including T.L. Osborne Ministries in Tulsa, Harvest International Church in Nashville and CBN Prayer Center in Nashville. She and Mike worked as house-parents for Nashville Group Home with the Tennessee Juvenile Corrections Department.

Donna received Jesus as Lord and Savior at the age of twelve and became Spirit-filled at the age of thirty-two. She has been a member of Eastgate CCF from the beginning and was ordained as an Elder in 2016. Donna is retired and currently enjoys writing poetry, bible study and prayer.