The Waldensian local Church has celebrated the 150th anniversary of the inauguration of the place of worship in Palazzo Cavagnis, while there is evidence of the presence of Protestants in earlier years who organised bible meetings and preaching in other sites.
The Waldensian Evangelical and Methodist Church of Venice
Waldensians arrived in Venice after the Veneto region was annexed to Italy. In October 1866, Pastor Giovanni Davide Turin contacted the young Waldensians enrolled in the 19th Infantry Regiment and launched the first bible and preaching meetings at his home on Campo S. Zulian.
At Christmas 1867, the Waldensian community of Venice was constituted with the name of the Italian Evangelical Church. During the Christmas service on 25 December 1868, the church in Palazzo Cavagnis was inaugurated.
There were frequent and intense occasions for collaboration with the Lutheran Church, but over time it was with the Methodist Church that activities, programmes and pastoral care were shared. In 1977, the two communities – Waldensian and Methodist – stipulated a convention that allowed each believer to maintain their own specific denomination while being members of a single local community. Shortly thereafter, the Methodist church at San Marco (Sottoportego del Cavalletto) would be sold. The Venetian convention was, in a certain sense, the precursor of the the Pact of Integration signed at the national level by the Waldensian and Methodist churches of Italy. Together, these two denominations constituted the WALDENSIAN CHURCH, UNION OF THE METHODIST AND WALDENSIAN CHURCHES, since 1979.