Our Family Ministry Experience
My name is Felix Alexander Gutierrez Pinto. I was born September 23, 1971. I few up as one in the middle of a large family of twelve brothers and sisters.
I came to Christ when a missionary team from North America visited ur community. I was 18 years old and I even remember the message where they spoke of Christ and this same day I gave my life to Jesus. It will be 26 years since I made this decision. 2 years afterward I began to serve as pastor of youth in the same church for 7 years. At this same time I met Ninoska Rojas and we married in 1996. We have two girls, Mariana Valentina, 17 years and Andrea Sarai, 15. So we’ve been married now for 20 years and as a family we have served the Lord together in various places such as our local church. Our church gave my wife and I a leadership role in reaching out to people on the coast of Venezuela and also in the interior of the country with indigenous people groups. We also served at the Rancho Grande Bible Camp for eight years where I served as Director. In the last three years we have been training Bible counselors in various provinces of the island of Cuba.
Presently we work as a family now establishing and pastoring a church in Merida, Venezuela. It is in the rural sector of Venezuela called the Paramo de la Culata. We started this ministry 8 years ago. The church is called the Evangelical Free Mountain of Salvation Church and is associated with the Evangelical Free Church of Venezuela with whom I have my pastoral license.
Our local church supports us at $20 per month and we receive other offerings sporadically from individuals. I also have been able to generate income by making and selling wooden crafts.
Children’s workshop Ministry
My wife and I are in our last year of study at the Universerity Politecnica de Merida. We will receive a degree in pedagogy and hope to use what we learn in our children’s workshop ministry in the community.
The People and Community of Merida
Merida is part of the Venezuela Andes. It is the highest part of the country where the majority of the people are practicing Catholics with many religious traditions. Their lives are often filled with fear of condemnation by their gods. Temperatures here range from about 2-14 degrees centigrade. It is a mountainous region with many lakes and rivers. The people are hard-working farmers who care for their land and animals.
The missionary work in these mountains is very different than the rest of the country where to be a Christian, is equal to deny family customs and traditions. Since there is such a strong resistance to the Gospel, we do all we can to serve the needs of the community personally. We first earn the trust of the people before speaking of Christ. Our community is the fourteenth of sixteen around Merida and ours is the only Evangelical church among them.
Our House and Church
Our church has about sixty-five members now including children. Many are farmers and carpenters and the women work in the home or in small hotels.
The house we are renting has a large parking lot that we all the local elementary school use two days a week so the kids can play sports. We also offer the community workshops about various topics such as sewing, painting, various crafts and wood-working. In this way we have won favor with the people and build positive relationships with them. This has allowed us to be accepted by some families and break down many barriers to the gospel. It is one way we can show the love of Christ through service.
In the church we have two Bible studies every week, a prayer service and our weekly Sunday school. We use the Project Phillip of the Bible League as our key discipleship material for evangelism and discipleship. It has helped us strengthen our church greatly.
Our vision here is to be able to multiply ourselves and become a tiny light in various communities and we believe firmly that the message of Christ is our life and that people can see the love of God through our service.
Construction of a church building that can be used also for our workshops for the community and for an office
Video Been for the work of the church in the community
Construction of a house for our family. We meed to purchase building materials and recruit people to help with the work.
Regular and consistent financial support