In May, the World Church Relationships Team [at the Methodist Church in Britain] received visitors from one of our partner organisations: the Council of Latin American and Caribbean Evangelical Churches (CIEMAL). CIEMAL is made up of all our Methodist Partner Churches in Latin America and the Caribbean, and was created in 1969. MCB’s World Mission Fund supports CIEMAL’s core work through an annual grant.
President Lizzette Gabriel, General Secretary Luciano Pereira and Youth President Emerson Castillo gave a brief overview of the work going on in the region, as well as some of the challenges they face. One exciting new development is CIEMAL’s vision to train missionaries in Latin America and the Caribbean. This is exciting because the region is looking from within to provide the personnel
and finances to do this, rather than expecting outside partners to fund it.
This vision is also indicative of how the theology of mission has changed in the region in postdictatorship years. Whereas before the emphasis used to be on liberation theology, churches
now say that liberation theology no longer works. The emphasis has shifted from Church as an institution to evangelism, discipleship, growth and equipping individuals.
This story originally appeared in the July 2015 World Church Relationships News Bulletin.