Nelson Morales Fredes in Guatemala

Dear Friends,

Thank you for praying with us this week for Dr. Nelson Morales Fredes in Guatemala.

Located just south of Mexico, Guatemala is celebrated for its mountainous landscape adorned with volcanoes, biodiverse rainforests, and Maya heritage sites. Of the country’s 18 million people, 45% are Catholic, 42% Protestant, and 11% irreligious. Between 1960 and 1996, Guatemala endured a bloody civil war that left more than 200,000 dead and over one million displaced. In its fight against mostly Mayan insurgents, the US-backed government also carried out genocidal massacres against Mayan communities, torture, disappearances, and summary executions, including of civilians. Decades after the 1996 peace accords, Guatemala continues to endure high rates of poverty and gang violence, political instability, and the ongoing effects of trauma.

Nelson serves as Provost and Dean at Seminario Teológico Centroamericano (SETECA), where his wife Xenia also works. Located in Guatemala City, SETECA is one of Latin America’s largest seminaries. Each year, SETECA trains 1,500 students from nearly 30 countries, and its 3,000+ alumni serve Christ’s Church throughout the world. Through their teaching ministries, Nelson and Xenia equip pastors and missionaries to confront the dual challenges of syncretism, which mixes Christian teachings with Maya religious practices, and the prosperity gospel. 
 
ScholarLeaders supported Nelson for his PhD in New Testament at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (USA) through Leader Studies and has collaborated with SETECA through the Vital Sustainability Initiative. Check out this 2021 Spanish volume, edited by Nelson: Buenas Nuevas desde América Latina. The collection features essays in honor of John Stott by Latin American theologians, including Ruth Padilla DeBorst (Women’s Peer Leader Forum) and J. Daniel Salinas (Leader Studies).
 
Nelson shares the following message:

I am a Chilean, married to Xenia. Both of us work at Seminario Teológico Centroamericano (Seteca) in Guatemala as teachers and administrators. I have been the Dean/Provost since January 2021, while Xenia works with alumni. We are also involved in Langham Preaching Ministries in Guatemala. 
 
Guatemala is a culturally rich country, where 25 languages are spoken. It is one of the most Christian countries in the region with about 42% of the population identifying as Evangelical/Protestant, but it is also one of the poorest. 
 
Our seminary has a high impact in the region, with alumni from almost every country, from Canada to Argentina and Chile, as well as some from Europe and Africa, serving the kingdom of God in more than 40 countries worldwide. 
 
Prayer Requests
 
Please pray for wisdom and health, and for all the different ministries we are involved in to develop well.
 
In particular, pray for SETECA’s post-pandemic challenges and opportunities, that we may be sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s guidance in service to the Latin American Church and beyond.
 
Pray also for national peace and discernment. In June, there will be general elections of various leaders, from president and congress representatives to city mayors.
 
Blessings,
 
Nelson Morales Fredes

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