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rev. leslie vogel

Mission leaders meet to talk about being thoughtful travelers during mission trips

As travel restrictions begin to loosen worldwide and churches start thinking about long- and short-term mission trips, a group of Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) mission leaders, World Mission staff and mission co-workers joined together on Zoom Wednesday night to talk about how to be thoughtful travelers when visiting global partners in the aftermath of the pandemic.

A Lenten journey to a Guatemalan prison

During the 32 years since my ordination as a Presbyterian minister and mission co-worker, I have engaged in many not-so-ordinary activities of ministry. The chain of events that first introduced me to Virginia Laparra was set into motion on Ash Wednesday, March 2. What has happened since then has pushed me far outside my comfort zone. My pastoral visits with Virginia have stretched me greatly in my own lifelong journey of faith.

A sweeping view of Latin America and the Caribbean in only 17 minutes

A new video produced by World Mission’s Latin America and Caribbean office takes viewers through a sweep of the region, checking in with mission co-workers and PC(USA) partners to help Presbyterians learn more about their work and their love for the region and its people.

Human rights group marks historic convictions in Guatemala

Human rights groups including the Guatemala Human Rights Commission are marking this week’s guilty verdicts of five former Civil Defense Patrollers accused of crimes of sexual violence and crimes against humanity against 36 Maya Achí women.

Guatemala mission partners focus on relief rather than reunion

The ministry of presence is important in God’s mission. Yet even when a global pandemic causes cancellation of short-term mission trips, congregations and presbyteries in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) are showing care and compassion in creative and urgently needed ways from afar.

Women empowering women in Mexico

When Maria’s husband became increasingly violent toward her, she left her home and sought refuge in a safe place. What she never dreamed was that he would also exercise violence against her legally, through gaining custody of their two sons and filing for a restraining order to bar her from her home and the business she built with him. Homeless, Maria returned to the congregation she had stopped attending when she got married 18 years earlier; she was welcomed back, and a church family offered her shelter in their home. Her story is only beginning, as she heals and finds the courage and stamina to challenge the system and regain access to her sons.

‘Like someone popped a bubble and let me out’

Pastors in Guatemala may not have the graduate-level educational background that their Presbyterian counterparts in the U.S. bring to ministry.But the passion for their calling and the skills they’re demonstrating as they either prepare for or hone their ministry were on display last week at the offices of CEDEPCA,  the Protestant Center for Pastoral Studies in Central America, a longtime partner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).