Mission History in Colombia

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

1974: Missionary team arrives in Medellín. First worship service conducted and first adult confirmand. Radio outreach is started.

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 in Bogotá.

1990: Reinaldo Gómez installed as first lay minister in Medellín.

1996: Medellín students given pastoral duties.

1997: Medellín Christian information center moves to downtown church building. Bogotá congregation and Christian information center move to new location in north of city.

1998: Bogotá school is first Spanish-speaking school in WELS fellowship. English as foreign language classes begin as outreach.

1999: The Medellin congregation has two Colombian pastors and the Bogotá church has a three-man council. All WELS missionaries and families are evacuated because of increasing violence in the 35 year-old civil war. 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: Visits to Colombia by the WELS coordinator are discontinued due to increased security risks. Contact and long-distance training are continued by phone, e-mail, and fax.

2005: Due to improved security conditions in Colombia, members of the Latin American Traveling Theological Educators team begin to make periodic trips to Colombia for continued theological training of leaders.

2006: Efforts begin to spread the Word in the city of Barranquía when a family from the Bogotá congregation moves to this city.


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