"Zealous for the Orthodox faith they have embraced over the last several years, the Guatemalan faithful are eager to bring the Gospel to their fellow countrymen and beyond. . . 500,000 Guatemalans were received into the Church in January 2010, and the flow has continued since then"
To help carry out this Christian calling, a new seminary-mission training center is being built in the mountain village of Talmiche above the fast-growing city of Huehuetenango in the Hueuetenango Department in the western highlands, reports Fr. John Chakos at his The Word From Guatemala blog.
The new facility is being built with the support of the Orthodox Christian Mission Center and private donors.
Fr. John writes:
Twelve years ago, I first visited this lofty site with the late Father Andres Giron [† 2014—OC], the founder of this great church movement towards Orthodoxy. From this lofty vantage point, we dreamed of a future waiting to be fulfilled throughout his beloved land. His was a soul on fire with the love of Christ and a burning desire to help the long-suffering people of Guatemala with their spiritual and material needs.
The two-story building includes Byzantine-style structures with “a noticeable monastic flair.”
Construction began in mid-June with a moleben for the blessing of holy water attended by volunteer workers from various villages.
As of a week ago, the foundation has been poured and the wall are going up, Fr. John writes. Volunteer teams are taking turns working at the site.
Fr. John concludes:
And so it is that Fr. Andres’ dream is taking shape through the very hands of those that he mentored for so many years. His arduous journey of service through many apostolic trials and a brutal civil war is now over. The future of this mission rests squarely upon those whose lives he inspired by his example of selfless service and love. The seminary and mission training center will be ground zero for the next phase of explosive growth, ushered in and led by the Christ-loving people of Guatemala. We pray that their efforts will bear much fruit for the glory of God.
A two-year seminary program, with on-site and Skype instruction, began operation in Aguacate in 2017.
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