Latin America

The primary focus of our Latin America missions team is Academia Cristo. Academia Cristo is a multi-faceted effort which seeks to 1) make disciples in Latin America by sharing the message of God’s grace with as many people as possible, 2) identify and train potential leaders, and 3) encourage those leaders to make disciples who plant churches. The Latin America missions team uses social media to promote the Academia Cristo mobile app and website throughout Latin America.

The Academia Cristo training program is divided into three tiers:

  1. The mobile app: The Academia Cristo app offers four self-led courses at the Bible Information Class level of study. The last course in this tier focuses on training students to share what they’ve learned with others. Students must complete all four courses before they are able to sign up for live classes.
  2. Discipleship 1: Students work through 13 Bible Institute level classes that are taught live online by a WELS missionary or national partner. At this level, a large emphasis is placed on gathering a group of people to share the gospel message. The goal is that students who finish Discipleship 1 are in doctrinal agreement with WELS.
  3. Discipleship 2: Students who complete the Discipleship 1 tier then move onto Discipleship 2 where they take advanced Bible institute level classes, still taught live online by a WELS missionary or national partner. Students at this level are actively sharing the gospel message with a group of people and are in doctrinal agreement with WELS. They are also matched with a WELS missionary or national partner mission counselor and receive face-to-face visits.

Fast Facts

  • 1.3 million followers on Facebook
  • Academia Cristo manages over 4.2 million engagements every month through their various communication platforms
  • 430,000+ people have downloaded the Academia Cristo mobile app that launched in February 2020
  • 1,300+ people have completed the self-led courses on the mobile app since March 2020 and are signed up for live courses
  • 360+ people have completed one live course since March 2020 with a WELS missionary or national partner
  • 45 people have been confirmed as Lutherans through Academia Cristo
  • There are 73 Academia Cristo students who have said they are currently sharing Bible materials with a group
  • More than 323,000 Biblical resources (music, studies, movies, etc.) have been downloaded
  • More than 60 people are contributing in different ways to the work of Academia Cristo
  • 25 different people have taught Academia Cristo courses (national pastors and WELS missionaries)

Latest videos

Do you have Spanish-speaking family members or friends who would be interested in learning more about the program? Share the Spanish version of the Academia Cristo video from their YouTube page

Support mission work in Latin America. Your gift will support online outreach through Academia Cristo, church planting, and the sister synods that work closely with the Latin America missions team. Select “Latin America Special Projects” (for a more general gift) or a specific Latin American country or ministry you’d like to support from the drop-down menu.

Academia Cristo students

This map shows current Academia Cristo students who are currently taking Bible Institute level classes with a WELS missionary or national partner.

1-2 courses = Gray
3-4 courses = Blue
5-6 courses = Green
7-8 courses = Yellow

9-10 courses= Orange
11-12 courses = Red
13+ courses = Violet

Latest news

Get the latest resources and materials from Latin America at

WELS Missions also partners with sister synods and independent churches throughout Peru and Chile. Synods in both of these countries are directly supported by our mission partners in the Evangelical Lutheran Synod (ELS) and are thereby in fellowship with WELS through the Confessional Evangelical Lutheran Conference (CELC), a worldwide fellowship of confessional Lutherans. Visit ELS world outreach page to learn more about work in Peru and Chile. To learn more about the CELC and other mission partners, visit

Mission Partners


Browse through and share pictures of Latin America, taken by WELS missionaries and national workers.