Trudy Vertucci-Ardizzone, religious educator and author, died on Jan. 9. Born in Brooklyn, New York, she began her professional career as a special education teacher and clinical social worker. After her marriage to Joe Ardizzone and the birth of their daughter Francesca, the family moved to Southern California and joined St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Del Mar. Thus began a 23-year career as a religious educator whose highlights included serving as a consultant to the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego and the churchwide Office of Christian Formation; and as missioner for Christian formation at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Lompoc, California.
Wizards and Wonders, Trudy’s Vacation Bible School curriculum based on Harry Potter, was published by LeaderResources in 2002 and quickly became one of its all-time best sellers. It was the Children’s Program for General Convention 2003 in Minneapolis. In 2009, Trudy headed the team that presented The Discovery Center for Lifelong Christian Formation at the General Convention in Anaheim. Her latest VBS, The Peaceable Kingdom, will be published in 2013 by LeaderResources. Also an accomplished poet and playwright, two of Trudy’s poems appeared in the 2009 anthology Lifting Women’s Voices.