A Need for More Pastoral Leadership in Paraguay
Church of God congregations in Paraguay are seeing a surge in attendance. In a country where only 7 percent claim to be evangelical Christians, the Church of God has doubled in size in the last four years from 2,000 to nearly 4,000 believers. In 2015, one congregation, Encarnación, reported 207 baptisms!
God is on the move in this small, South American country. Paraguay is about the size of the state of California and landlocked between Bolivia, Brazil, and Argentina. There is a long history of Christian influence, but in recent years it has become increasingly culturally Christian.
The Church of God in Paraguay was started in 1972 by Martin and Tabitha Kurrle with the goal of building churches for evangelistic work and schools for educating children and youth. Since its beginning, the Church of God in Paraguay has been innovative in ministry. They started the first Christian radio station in southern Paraguay over fifteen years ago. They also have a TV station, multiple schools, social programs, and they engage in public issues.
Norberto and Nancy Kurrle Family
The growth of the Church of God creates some challenges. Many churches struggle with having enough physical space to welcome new believers. Norberto Kurrle, the national leader for the Church of God in Paraguay, says that “there are a number of new church buildings that have been built in Paraguay over the last decade, but the need is for dedicated, trained pastors and church leaders to serve in these congregations.”
Thankfully, there is a great solution. Bordering Argentina, there is a longtime-running Church of God training school called the Warner Institute. The Warner Institute trains and equips pastors for ministry through a three-year program that focuses on foundational components like theology and pastoral care, but also on practical, vocational training.
The Church of God in Paraguay finds itself at a great juncture,” says Norberto Kurrle. “In light of the growth of our congregations, it is very important to train new pastors who will become the leaders in local Church of God congregations.” Will you join Global Strategy in preparing a path for the next generation of leaders?
To give to the work of pastoral training in Paraguay, make checks payable to “Church of God Ministries” and specify “Paraguay Pastoral Training – #42.40426” in the memo line.