Monday, September 24, 2007

Rev. Bryce Norton at Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela

Today, the Rev. Bryce Norton, Minister of Missions at Mount Pisgah UMC in Alpharetta Georgia, begins teaching "The Life of Christ" at the Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela in Barquisimeto, Venezuela. Mount Pisgah has been the primary sponsor of the Seminary for the last 5 years and has already committed to another year of support. Rev. Norton has been supportive of our work as we continue to provide quality, accessible, affordable theological training at the undergraduate level.

This is the finest program of its kind in all of the nation of Venezuela. Formal theological training for Protestant students is not readily available in most of South America. Until recently, all of our students were from Venezuela. However we recently admitted our first international student, a Colombian.

Please pray for the week of classes. Also, pray for our Academic Dean. He just finished a week of teaching in the Church Planting Institute in Puerto Ordaz following a week of teaching in the Institute in Barquisimeto. These weeks are an extension ministry of the seminary and take the ministry focus of starting new congregations to those for whom attending seminary is not currently a possibility. Following this week of seminary classes, He and his wife, will have a short break before hosting the week of Seminary in October 15-20 when he and Rev. Donna Goff (McEachern UMC) will be teaching two courses. Additionally, Warren Lathem will be teaching a Practicum on Establishing Community Ministries on Friday afternoon and evening and Saturday Morning.

Looking further ahead, in November Dr. Wes Griffin and the International Leadership Institute will lead a week-long Leaders Training in cooperation with the Seminary in Barquisimeto. Pray for this great event sponsored by the McEachern UMC. Also, in November and December David will be teaching the next sessions in the Church Planting Institute in both Barquisimeto and Puerto Ordaz.

Then January 28-February 1, Dr. Steve Wood, Senior Minister of Mount Pisgah UMC will teach Expository Preaching and Warren Lathem will teach Rites and Sacraments with the assistance of Dr. Jim Cantrell, DS of the Atlanta Decatur District, and Rev. Michael Cavin, DS of the Northwest District, North Georgia Conference. This will be Steve's first trip to Venezuela and Jim and Mike's second.

Please pray for the students, staff and faculty, and for the resources to be provided for each of these important ministries. Pray for some large donors to underwrite the expansion of the seminary program, the acquisition of facilities, and more "Friends of Venezuela" who will share the burden for this country. Also, pray for the physical safety of all associated with the seminary.

If you would like more information about Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela, please contact Warren Lathem at