Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Colombia - Mission History

1973 -- WELS commissions three-man missionary team to Colombia.

1974 -- Missionary team arrives in Medellín. Mission conducts first worship service and confirms first adult member. Radio outreach starts.

1975 -- Dedication of Holy Trinity Church in Medellín. Bible Institute program begins.

1979 -- Provisional seminary opens in Medellín.

1982 -- First Colombian student graduates from Lutheran seminary.

1983 -- Ordination and installation of first Colombian pastor. Work begins in Bogotá with two missionaries.

1989 -- Inauguration of first Christian Information Center (CIC) in Bogotá.

1990 -- Installation of first lay minister in Medellín.

1996 -- Medellín students receive pastoral duties.

1997 -- Medellín CIC moves to downtown church building. Bogotá congregation and CIC move to new location in north of city.

1998 -- Bogotá school becomes first Spanish-speaking school in WELS fellowship. English as Foreign Language (EFL) classes begin as outreach.

1999 -- Medellín congregation has two Colombian pastors. Bogotá church has a three-man council. All WELS missionaries and families evacuate because of increasing violence. Missionary begins long-distance training and counseling of national leaders.

2000 -- Bogotá congregation begins a new congregation in a local school.

2001 -- Three Colombian leaders begin helping WELS Coordinator train nationals in ministry.

2003 -- WELS Coordinator discontinues field visits to Colombia due to increased security risks. Contact and long-distance training continues by phone, e-mail, and fax.

2005 -- Due to improved security conditions, LATTE Professors begin to make periodic trips to Colombia for continued theological training of leaders. The Colombian national church is incorporated as: Colombian Confessional Lutheran Church (ILCC.Wels); giving the church legal standing in the country.

2006 -- Outreach efforts begin in the city of Barranquilla when a family relocates from the Bogotá congregation. LATTE continues to train student pastors of the congregations in Bogotá and Medellín.

2007 -- First national missionary trip to Barranquilla. LATTE work continues with the theological education of church leaders and pastors.

2008 -- The ILCC.Wels begins to support the International Church through the Internet. LATTE continues its assistance.

2009 -- A national pastor and LATTE professor make visits to Quibdó and establish fellowship with an existing congregation. Our Redeemer Congregation of Quibdó is born with 50 members. Mission trips to cities of Cartago, Pereira and Valledupar begin.

2010 -- The ILCC.Wels calls one of the pastors in Medellín to serve as a national missionary and he starts to study full-time with LATTE to finish up his theological studies. Mission trips to the cities of Cartago, Pereira, Valledupar, San Rafael and Manizales are made.

2011 -- For the first time in history, a representative from Colombia attends the world-wide meeting of the Confessional Evangelical Lutheran Conference (CELC) in New Ulm, MN. The Colombian national church celebrates a special working congress with the attendance of members of the WELS committee for Latin America. The Light of Christ Lutheran Church is born in Santa Marta with 6 members. The ILCC.Wels through its national missionary pastor prepares men for the public ministry with LATTE's assistance.

2012 -- With the help of scholarships, two leaders begin full-time preparation for the public ministry; one student from the church in Quibdó and another from the congregation in Medellín. Professors from both the ILCC.Wels and LATTE carry out this ministerial training together.

 Our Redeemer Congregation -- Quibdó 

No comments: