Tuesday, September 09, 2014


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September Newsletter

Pastor Carlos Pirona assumes the Presidency of Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela. Warren Lathem becomes President Emeritus
Dear Jane,
Since 2002 we have had the goal of raising up a fully indigenous seminary in Venezuela. This is a major step toward the realization of that goal. President Pirona has taken over responsibility for the property, operations and the staff of the Seminary. This is a huge step forward in many ways. Particularly, it provides much better leadership for this aspect of the ministry. It also frees our US team to focus more on academics, visioning, and the launching of the new on-line SEIN, Seminario Evangélico Internacional, the development of the graduate programs of SEMWESVEN, the establishment of more extension campus sites and launching the Church Planting Institute.

Pastor Carlos Pirona, Dr Maria Pirona, Warren Lathem
President Carlos Pirona and his wife, Dr. Maria Pirona, are the founding pastors of the Restauracion UMC in Barquisimeto, our largest UMC in Venezuela. They have also planted over a dozen new congregations in Venezuela and other Latin American nations, they are both graduates of SEMWESVEN and are currently enrolled in the Master's program. They have both taught courses at the Seminary. Dr. Maria is the Medical Director of the Wesley Medical Center on the Campus of SEMWESVEN. President Carlos is the Venezuelan President of the International Leadership Institute and also serves as the President of the Ministerial Association of the Lara State, the largest association in the nation. He and Pastora Maria will continue to serve as the lead pastors of the Restauracion Church and International Ministries.
I (Warren Lathem) am assuming a greater role in development for SEMWESVEN, SEIN, and the Wesley Medical Center. I will also continue to teach courses in the Practice of Ministry and Biblical Studies at SEMWESVEN, both undergraduate and graduate level, teach at some extension locations in Venezuela, teach courses for SEIN, and help with the development of the recording studio at SEMWESVEN. Additionally, I will promote and recruit for both seminaries and continue to raise partners and funding for all the above,
Dr. Dan Dunn will continue to serve as the Academic Dean of SEMWESVEN, undergraduate and graduate degree programs. He also assumes the role of President of SEIN. He will continue to teach in all the schools, supervise the curriculum, translate on occasion for other faculty, administer the programs, recruit faculty, and raise up Venezuelan professors. He continues to play a vital role in our attempt to constantly improve the quality and accessibility of this excellent theological education.
Dr. David Cosby will continue in his role as Dean of Students of SEMWESVEN. He is a beloved professor who will continue to teach several courses in both SEMWESVEN and SEIN. Additionally, we expect to launch a new Institute of Church Planting under David's leadership and expand our extension campus offerings through his leadership. Additionally, David serves as the Field Director for One Missionary Society, Venezuela, and will be working with mission teams and other projects of OMS. He and Carol are career missionaries and bring much needed spiritual maturity and experience to this work. They are preparing to live full time in Venezuela.

Baptismal Candidates
These and many other developments in the work in Venezuela are indicative of the rapid growth of the ministry there. The church in Venezuela is exploding with growth, especially among the youth of the nation. The political, economic and secular spiritual environment is very difficult, beyond anything we can imagine in the US. But God is proportionally blessing the Church there.

Scores coming to Christ in Venezuela - Help us raise up well equipped leaders!
The greatest need for this work is the financial need. The last 12 months recorded in excess of 60% inflation in Venezuela. The rate of inflation for food was even higher! Therefore, attending seminary becomes more and more difficult.

 A young church in Venezuela needs trained leadership
Huge financial barriers stand in the way of many potential students, especially the 16-25 year old leaders of this explosive growth. They have the greatest need for this education, but the fewest financial recourses.
Will you help? I unashamedly ask you to prayerfully consider today making a $100 gift, or more, for this work. We desperately need at least 25 new people or churches to give this amount. Could you do this? If so, you may give via PayPal by clicking on the button below, 

Or you can send a check to:
PO Box 1655, Duluth
GA 30096

Thank you so very much. Your gift of $100 or more, or any size gift, will have a huge return on investment in Venezuela and in eternity. Remember, no US citizen receives any compensation from these gifts.

Report re: Samuel Rojas.  Thank you for your prayers, Sam continues to be free, but has to await a decision on his legal fate. The hearing was just postponed again to September 30. Remember, he was arrested for buying cement for the construction of the Medical Center, cement that was later deemed contraband. He spent two months in jail. Please continue to pray for his full exoneration.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Latest News from Venezuela!

Greetings in the wonderful Name of Jesus!

I am writing you from Cabuare, Venezuela, home of the Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela and the Wesley Medical Center. Both of these ministries have been made possible by your gifts.

Did you know a year of theological education in our Seminary, SEMWESVEN, cost about $1,800 per student? Compare that to my alma mater, Candler School of Theology, where a year of education costs about $28,000. Asbury and Duke have similar costs.

Certainly, we do not claim a year of education here in Venezuela is equal to a year at those great American institutions. But our Venezuelan alumni and students declare it is the very best available in Venezuela!

Now we need your help. Over the last 12 months the inflation rate in Venezuela exceeded 60%. The predictions are it will get much higher in the next 12 months. As you can imagine, this is devastating for our students.

Therefore we have to do even more to assist in their education. The student pays only a small portion of the $1,800 annual cost. Your gifts provide the rest. However, what it the cost for each student to attend is still more than 2 months of salary for the typical Venezuelan worker. Therefore, even though costs are very low by our standards, it is terribly expensive by Venezuelan standards.

Would you please make a gift to the Seminary through Venezuela Now, Inc? No US citizen will receive any salary support from this gift. Only the students will benefit.

In 2015 we will have to cut back the number of class offerings unless more funding is received from the US. The students simply cannot afford to take as many days off work AND pay the tuition and fees. We are processing these decisions now. Your immediate gift will help us in our decision making. Please give a sacrificial gift today.

How much can you give! Anything will help. We especially need monthly gifts of $100 or more. Please prayerfully consider making regular gifts, you can send your check to:
PO Box 1655
Duluth, GA  30096
Or you can simply click on the PayPal button here:

Thank you.
Now for other news...
Thank you for praying for SAMUEL ROJAS to be released from jail. Praise God! After two months in the local jail he was released and awaits his hearing onSeptember 3. Please keep praying for complete exoneration.
The WESLEY MEDICAL CENTER is open and serving the needs of the community surrounding the Seminary. It will rapidly become the gold standard for medical care in the evangelical community.

DR. MARIA PIRONA is the medical director. Sandra Sanchez is the psychologist also serving on the staff. We will receive our first medical mission team in October.

Also about a dozen Rotary International Clubs in the US are working toward a partnership with the local club to benefit the Center.

Would your club like to help? Send me a message for details.

The CASA HOGAR LUZ DE ESPERANZA, the first Methodist Children's Home in Venezuela just received it's first four resident children. This is after a year of government red tape, over 5 years of construction and 13 years of dreaming and visioning. Praise God these first four siblings have a safe, nourishing and nurturing home for the first time in their lives. Hundreds more will follow.
The UNITED METHODIST CHURCH OF VENEZUELA continues to experience rapid growth comparable only to the Methodist Church of Cuba. These two national churches are the fastest growing Methodist churches in the Western Hemisphere. We not only work with the UMC here, but also a dozen other denominations and independent churches. One example of the growth of the church here: last year the Ondas de Paz UMC conducted 8 simultaneous community Vacation Bible Schools. This week they will hold SEVENTEEN simultaneous Schools in 17 communities reaching over 800 children, 600 of whom have never been to a Christian worship service. Over half of the adult membership of the church will serve in some capacity in these schools. Further, I am often asked how many congregations are in the Methodist Church in Venezuela. I don't know. New congregations seem to spring up almost overnight. It is an amazing thing to witness, unlike anything I have seen in my 42 years of ministry! Come and see!


The SEMINARIO EVANGÉLICO INTERNACIONAL (SEIN) is the on-line Spanish language school of theology we are birthing out of SEMWESVEN. Our first course will be ready for several groups and individuals to do beta testing in September. We are rapidly moving to get a portion of our curriculum on line byJanuary 1 for affordable access for the 400 million Spanish speakers in the world, 50 million of whom live in the US, the third largest number in the world. Through the generous gift of an anonymous donor, we have the equipment on site to record, edit and present this education on the internet and are using temporary studio space. We are waiting for the architect to complete the plans before building the permanent recording studios. Additionally, this equipment and studios will make audio and video recording accessible and affordable to the church in Venezuela, for the very first time!
There is so much more to tell. But it will have to wait. This is the most rewarding ministry of my life. Thank you for your partnership in spreading the Gospel in Venezuela, and soon to the whole Spanish speaking world!
We look forward to hearing from you. Please see our Prayer Partners for Venezuela Now on FaceBook and become one of our prayer team. Dr. Gayle Arnold will guide your prayers for the work here.

In Christ,
Warren Lathem

Friday, June 13, 2014

*********STICKY POST**********STICKY POST***********

Latest Events in Venezuela

Dear Friends of Venezuela Now,

Thank you for your prayers and generous support, notes of encouragement and Godly concern. This has been and continues to be a difficult time in the midst of great blessing.

First, Samuel continues incarcerated for buying a truckload of Government controlled cement, then discovering after his arrest it was allegedly destined to a different customer. So he faces serious charges of dealing in "contraband." If true, he did so without the knowledge of this. He simply bought what he thought was legal cement for the construction of the medical clinic. It appears the owner of the cement company may have mistakenly violated the law, and Sam is caught up in it. I spoke to him on Thursday of this week and he is in good spirits, but very concerned about having the necessary funds for his legal defense. I assured him we would make sure we have adequate funds to cover the costs. We pray for your generous help with these legal fees which initially will cost $4000-$10,000.

Second, the Seminary continues to function unencumbered by the flap over the cement. All is well and church retreats continue on the campus, minor construction continues while we seek legal cement, mission teams will soon arrive, and classes will resume. We thank God for the peace surrounding the Seminary. These prayers have been clearly answered. A byproduct of the "cement episode" and Sam's incarceration has been many of our alumni and students have stepped up to taking far greater ownership of the day to day operations as well as future direction of the Seminary. This is also an answer to prayer.

Third, the Wesley Medical Center (formerly named, Wesley Clinic) will have its Grand Opening June 28th. This was scheduled earlier, but current events necessitated postponing it. The day will include a free huge community clinic. The street will be blocked to traffic and doctors and nurses from across Venezuela will be there to treat the sick, setting up treatment stations in the street. Free food, bouncy houses, games for the children, etc. will all make this a very special event. We are also excited to have found a trusted and proven Christian leader who is an importer/exporter who is working with us to produce a list of approved items we can ship to the clinic, supplies and equipment and medications. As soon as we have the list, we will share it for you to help with donations. We expect to spend about $15,000 on the shipping container and associated costs. We must raise this amount. Will you help? Of course we still need to raise $30,000 for the cost of constructing the second floor of the Medical Center.  Be sure to mark your gifts for this project: "medical."

Fourth, the recent events strongly confirmed the decision to develop the Seminario Evangélico Internacional (SEIN) on line theological degree program. This has also been confirmed by several Christian leaders across Venezuela as well as several other countries in the Western Hemisphere. So our team of 4 Venezuelans are working very hard to get courses recorded, edited and designed for SEIN, getting the online platform established, and setting up a video and audio recording studio. This will make our first beta test course available to a select group in July or August and we plan to publicly offer courses in January. We have received a generous gift to cover the costs of the studios and equipment. Now we need the startup costs for SEIN, probably $10,000. We fully expect SEIN to produce a positive income stream for the work in Venezuela. Simply mark any gifts for this ministry: "SEIN."

Fifth, most importantly the church in Venezuela continues to experience exponential growth. The students and alumni of the Seminary are leading one of the most spectacular church growth movements of modern history. The UMC de Venezuela is planting dozens of new churches, producing dynamic young leaders and claiming their nation for Christ. Baptismal services for 20-50 youth and adults are commonplace. Evangelistic services resulting in scores of new followers of Jesus are just a part of the everyday ministry of the church. Social justice ministries are exploding as they feed the hungry, clothe the naked and heal the sick. Ministries in jails and prisons, ministries fighting human trafficking, ministries to indigent children are erupting all over the country. One quick example: our "home church" in Cabudare last year amazingly conducted 7 simultaneous Vacation Bible Schools in 7 different communities. We witnessed it. What a blessing! This year they have leaders trained to conduct 22, yes, 22 simultaneous VBS community schools. Glory!

So your gifts continue to bear generous and eternal fruit, "fruit that will last," as Jesus taught us in John 15. Thank you.

Please send a generous gift for one or more of the needs listed above. Send you check to:

PO Box 1655
Duluth, GA 30096

Or click on the PayPal button below and make your electronic gift.

Thank you and may The Lord bless you richly!

In Christ,


Thursday, March 06, 2014

Exciting times!

Dear Friend of God's Work in Venezuela,

John the Beloved Apostle wrote these words to his friends and fellow workers in the Kingdom of Jesus Christ:
"We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete. This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.(1 John 1:4-5)

Please let me share with you some of the remarkable things God is doing in Venezuela which create for us complete joy as I hope they do for you. In order to make somewhat comprehensible this explosion of Christian witness and ministry here
I will divide this into several categories. However this is  for the sake of clarity. These clear lines do not exist in reality here as all of the ministry is inter-related.

The Church in Venezuela

Words fail to capture what is happening in God's church here. For example, how do you describe the development and launch two weeks ago of SEVEN new stand-alone United Methodist congregations birthed by one mother church? How do you describe the doubling of attendance in one of those churches in just one week?

How does one tell about another UMC congregation that just launched 8 new cell groups most of which will soon become churches led and pastored by seminary students and leaders trained by the mother church for the past 18 months using material from the Seminary? How does one describe one of these leaders/pastors who is 18 and has already led his four brothers to Christ and in the last two weeks helped over 20 people become followers of Jesus? What about the 20 new leaders, mostly youth, who just started this same 18 months of training to become cell group leaders and church planters?

How would you tell the story of a Seminary graduate and youth pastor who just led his deaf grandfather to Christ, and is teaching him to share the gospel with the blind grandmother?

How does one describe two separate churches birthed by seminary students in the same city 10 years ago and now they are the largest congregations in that town and are transforming the very fabric of that city?

How would you tell about a church with a vision of doing ministry with needy children spending 10 years building a building to house orphans and abandoned children and now are simply waiting on the state approved children to arrive, probably this week?

What would you tell about a church whose co-pastor is a Pediatrician with a PhD. in Family Systems starting a Medical Clinic for the poor and a ministry with single, unwed mothers and their children. (Una Esperanza), a problem of epidemic proportions in Venezuela?

How can I tell you about the 15 year old girl who is a Seminary student and worship leader in her church? She is so effective that even with the almost deafening volume of Venezuelan worship music sound systems, the congregation's singing and praising God drowns out the amplified singers' voices? How does one adequately describe that when in many churches in the US a singer in the congregation feels like he/she is the only one singing?

How does one begin the reporting of jail and prison ministries, evangelism outreach, feeding programs for the elderly, habitat house-like ministries, conversions, physical healings, deliverance ministries, hundreds of children being converted and discipled, the massive groups of youth and young adults emerging as world class Christian leaders and so much more?

At the Center of this ministry of Jesus is the Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela.

The central focus of our ministry here is the Seminary. It is the hub of the wheel of the work. We just completed our 12th year since our first class in a rented room in 2002. Our campus in Cabudare, Venezuela has six buildings and those are being significantly enlarged and improved. But the story is not cement and rebar. The story is the lives and ministries being formed here. Two weeks ago over 80 students enrolled in three classes. Unfortunately the nation-wide political demonstrations forced the cancellation of one of those classes and the abbreviation of the other two. Yet they were of significant help to the students according to their own evaluation. Mission Pastor, Carey Akin from Mount Bethel UMC in Marietta, taught the students the necessity of and effective methods for the development of a deep, lasting and personally transforming relationship with Jesus Christ as the foundation of a life-long effective and faithful ministry. In the middle of the political conflict raging here, I taught a Master's Course on Conflict Management and resolution. The graduate students really responded to this material and we are planning a follow-up course in the fall. This is such an important topic in Venezuela and Latino culture. Next week, Dr. Michael Cash from Trinity on the Hill UMC will teach a New Testament Survey Course on the Gospels and at night alumnus Oscar Rodrigues who has a degree in environmental engineering will teach a course: Creation Care using Biblical teachings on our role in caring for God's creation.

The Seminario Evangelico Internacional

More about this later, but I just want to give you a first preview of the development of an international online ministry we are developing for the four hundred million Spanish speakers  in the world. The education of the Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela is about to go viral!

The Wesley Clinic

We will open the clinic in April or May. This is a huge addition to our ministry in Venezuela. Soon you will receive a separate newsletter just about the Clinic.

Well there is more, but this is enough for one report, except for this: Venezuela is strategic to the evangelism of the Latino world and as a witness to the nations since it is such a cosmopolitan nation. Because of this there is much opposition to the Gospel here. The Author of Chaos, the Father of Lies has created unimaginable chaos, deceit and darkness. Truly demonstrative demonic forces ensnarl and enslave the people. Political and religious leaders openly invoke the powers of Satan, black magic, Animism, Sanataria, idolatry and pure evil to destroy and control the people of this great nation.

But we have this good news as reported by the Apostle John, "God is light and in him is no darkness at all." The church here shines like a city set on a hill. The light is shining into every dark place, from the Presidential Palace in Mira Flores to the mud hut in La Piedad. You are making this possible through your prayers for and gifts to Venezuela Now, Inc.

Please prayerfully consider making a significant, sacrificial gift to this ministry today. I remind you, no US citizen receives any compensation from these gifts. Send your check to:
Venezuela Now, Inc.
PO Box 1655
Duluth, GA. 30096

God bless you as you give!  "We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.."

Wednesday, January 08, 2014


What's In Store, 2014

Here is our current areas of focus for 2014:

Seminary Classes
We plan to offer 45 individual courses in 2014 compared to 25 in 2013. This includes the first offering at a new extension site in Punta Fijo, extension courses in Nirgua and Puerto Ordaz. We will make use of more Venezuelan faculty than we have in any previous year.

Distance Learning and E-Learning
We are seriously pursuing the method and technology which will exponentially multiply our reach in theological education in the Americas. We are looking for the right person who will become the ministry champion for this effort. The potential is staggering! We have a record of 11 years of effective, excellent, accessible, affordable and practical Wesleyan theological education. We pray this will make it available to individuals, churches and denominations in all the Spanish speaking Americas.

Wesley Clinic
Our goal is to open the Wesley Clinic on the Seminary Campus in March. We have three Venezuelan doctors already committed to practice parttime in the clinic.  We will be looking to hire other staff in the next few months. This will operate under the medical non-profit of Maria Pirona, so Venezuela Now will only be a funding source and recruiter of US support. We will also serve in a consulting role to the Clinic. It has been a very difficult year due to shortages of construction materials, but we hold this target. Once the clinic is open, we will begin construction of the second floor as materials are available. It will house the laboratory, eye and dental clinics and a classroom for basic health education.

One Mission Society
Dr. David and Carol Cosby will be moving to Venezuela this summer to live more or less fulltime and direct the work of OMS particularly focusing on the Seminary, Mission Teams and Church Planting.  We look forward to a long a mutually effective relationship with OMS.

Una Esperanza
Teenage pregnancy, poverty, single parent families, promiscuity, child sexual abuse, sexually transmitted diseases, inaccessible birth control, lack of prenatal and postnatal care, and current as well as historic cultural mores, all have huge impact on the most vulnerable of Venezuela. Dr. Maria Pirona is developing this ministry on site at the Wesley Clinic on the east side of Barquisimeto and at Valle Dorado UMC on the west. We are also developing a US team led by Carolyn Bransby, founder of the Beacon of Hope Women's Center, and Jane Lathem. Our primary role will be raising friends and funds for this ministry. We have no owner or administrator responsibilities for this ministry.

Light of Hope Children's Home
Just opened, the first UMC Orphanage cares for unwanted children, orphaned children, children of 12 and 13 year old children, children of drug addicts and victims of abject poverty. Pastor Yolanda Caceido and missionary Nigel Borrows and the congregation of the Lugar Altissimo UMC have created this ministry. We pray this will become a model for other UM churches and denominations in Venezuela. We have voluntarily assumed a role of raising friends and funds for this ministry.  We have no owner nor administrator responsibilities.

The United Methodist Church of Venezuela
The UMC of Venezuela is now in its 7th year under the leadership of Bishop Juvenal Perez. The Seminary operates separately from the church, but is the official seminary for the UMC in Venezuela. We will continue to host the annual conference, train pastors, resource the churches and consult with the Bishop and conference leadership at their request. 

Property Acquisition
We are currently negotiating with two contiguous property owners to increase the bounds of the Seminary property. Some of the immediate needs include a location for a new UMC congregation, married housing, recreational facilities, additional classrooms, administrative offices for the Seminary and the UMC, and expansion of the retreat ministries.

Urban Garden
We begin our second growing season with this model urban gardening project under the direction of alumnus and pastor Oscar Rodrigues. We hope to add a rainwater catchment system and irrigation and a small fish hatchery for the sale of the fish to local fish farmers and the production of nutrient rich water for the garden.

We hope to complete the first floor of the Wesley Clinic in the first quarter, then proceed with second floor construction. We will build the first phase of a rainwater catchment system, fish hatchery, utilitarian landscaping improvements necessitated by years of neglect and run-off damage, complete laundry area, finish a second dining room and kitchen, add a formal library and take steps toward completion of the second floor of the Galpon and more security wall construction. All of these projects are dependent on funding and the availability of materials as well as an adjustment of priorities due to emergency and unexpected maintenance issues.

Mission Teams
We are preparing to receive at least 4 US teams on the campus this year and hope to recruit several more. Additionally, we will have our second Venezuelan Mission week combining construction projects and a seminary Bible class.
Bendiciones, Amigos.

Warren Lathem
Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela
779 889 6423
494 592 5678
Home 2865 Hightower Rd
Ball Ground, GA  30107
Venezuela Now, Inc.
PO Box 1655
Duluth, GA  30096

Saturday, January 04, 2014

Glory to God!

Praise the Lord, and Thank You all friends and supporters of Venezuela Now, Inc. and the ministries of the Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela, the Wesley Clinic, the Light of Hope Children's Home, and Una Esperanza. Your year-end giving made it possible for us to meet all 2013 financial obligations including paying our annual mortgage and we have enough cash to get through the first couple of months of 2014.Here is a brief summary of what was done last year.
2013 Highlights, Venezuela Now, Inc.

As I reflect on the ministry in Venezuela in 2013, I am amazed at all God has done. The church is growing at a remarkable rate. So is the Seminary. Below are a few highlights. Thank you to everyone who has prayed, given or served in this ministry. May God return your investment 100 fold.

New Masters Degree - after years of requests from students and alumni o...f the Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela's Bachelor of Theology degree program, we began the new Masters program. Over 20 students enrolled and have been most diligent in these advanced studies. Academic Dean, Dr. Dan Dunn, has put together an excellent curriculum and faculty.

25 Courses Taught - an international faculty of great academic credentials, sound theological and pedagogical method, vast experience and a real heart for God and the mission in Venezuela provided the finest theological education in Venezuela.

Partnership with One Mission Society - Dr. David and Carol Cosby have been named Field Directors for OMS' newest field: Venezuela! This opens the work to a huge pool of support for the ministry in Venezuela.

World Methodist Evangelism Institute - Drs. Eddie Fox and Winston Worrell and an international faculty invested a week of training and practice in evangelism for the Wesleyan church families in Venezuela. Over 80 participants learned how to much more effectively share their faith.

International Leadership Institute - both the young adult History Makers Conference and the ILI national conference taught the key principles of following Christ to over 80 students. This cooperative effort of SEMWESVEN and ILI is making a huge impact on the evangelical church in Venezuela and beyond.

Mission Teams - both Venezuelan and North American mission teams provided much work and support for SEMWESVEN. This was the first year we included Venezuelan Mission Teams.

Urban Garden - a generous US donor gave the funds to establish a model urban garden on the campus of the Seminary. This is significant in a country of good shortages and run-away inflation. We built the fences, garden, worm beds and compost piles for a fully organic garden and had our first harvest, all labor provided by students in the Seminary.

Campus Improvements - our campus, acquired in 2008, consists of 5 buildings, all of which have required significant improvement. This year we completed the new Masters classroom, added a new men's dorm room, reconstructed part of a roof, added a bunk room and baths on the Mission House, replaced the central sewer system, upgraded the electrical service, replaced several A/C units, added exterior/security lighting, built the Wesley Plaza, as well as routine maintenance.

Wesley Medical Clinic - construction began on the Clinic. We hope to finish the first floor by March of 2014. This has been very difficult as steel and cement are often not available. Therefore, we have decided to complete the first floor and open the clinic while we search for materials and supplies for the second floor.

Una Esperanza - a ministry with at-risk women and children took its first steps in 2013. Dr. Maria Pirona and the Wesley Clinic will partner to provide sex education, abstinence training, pre and post natal care, instruction in parenting skills, prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases and more.

Light of Hope Children's Home - a 10 year effort by UM pastor, Yolanda Caicedo and others, resulted in the completion of the first UM Children's Home in Venezuela. We were privileged to participate in the dedication service and provide assistance to this ministry to the lost children of Venezuela.

UMC de Venezuela Annual Conference - again SEMWESVEN hosted the annual conference of the UMC of Venezuela where Bishop Juvenal Perez was elected for a third and final 3year episcopal term. The conference reported over 25 new congregations formed in the first 6 years of its existence.