Growth and Depth in Bolivia

BY michaelclesceri | 26 June 2014 |

fernando_fernandez

Fernando Fernandez didn’t intend to become a pastor. Before God called his heart to ministry, he was caring for people as a doctor. Today, after training from Langham, he is caring for souls as the pastor of a growing church in Cochabamba, Bolivia.

As he did for so many other preachers around the world, John Stott played a significant role in moving Fernando along the path to biblical preaching.  “A long time ago, I found a study by John Stott on expository preaching,” he says. “I was asking, ‘How can John get so much out of only one verse?’ That is how I started studying, getting passionate about expository preaching.”

In Cochabamba, Fernando became involved in Langham’s pastor training movement, facilitated by Igor Amestegui. “Langham gave me the chance to go deep into studying the Word and to become a pastor,” he said.  He became the pastor of Dios en Cristo 9 years ago, when it was a church of only 18 members. Today, the church has grown to over 250.

“What has produced such a growth in the church? Without any doubts, it has been the preaching of the Word,” Fernando says. “When the people of this church meet with God’s Word, their lives are transformed. “

The members of Dios en Cristo church are growing in numbers, but perhaps more importantly, they are maturing in their faith. Fernando credits the escuelita, or small school that trains people to understand and share God’s Word, for this. He shares the story of Johanna, one of his escuelita students, to illustrate how just one person’s understanding of the Gospel can impact multiple lives.

“She started learning about biblical exposition and loving the Word. Today she is giving workshops at universities and other places around the country, workshops to groups of 300 people. She doesn’t have any theological training, only what she learned from the escuelita and her dependence on the Lord,” says Fernando. “I am talking about a young woman with that impact, not only in her life, but also an impact on the young people of her generation.”

At Langham, thanks to support from ministry partners like you, we are blessed to hear transformation stories like this from around the world, in the more than 70 countries where we are helping to equip the next generation of biblical leaders. Learn more about how you can partner with Langham to strengthen the global church.