Image of Guatemala flag Ministry Update August 2022

BY Bruno and Kathleen Soucy | October 4, 2022 | min read

BY Bruno and Kathleen Soucy|October 4, 2022

min read

For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgement of God rather than burnt offerings.

Hosea 6:6

Greetings from Guatemala!

We are so thankful for dear friends and supporters who participate in this work. We consider it a great privilege to be in this part of the world, accompanying churches and communities working to build the Kingdom.

Theological Consultation Central America

In June, our colleague Bill Dyck (working with us in Latin America and the Caribbean, now from Calgary) led a theological consult with our El Salvador and Guatemala partners. It was an opportunity for us to look for ways to support our partners and deepen discussions around Theological Education (TE) and developing leaders for ministry in Central America. Bill is a master at asking good questions and making statements that provoke thought. We talked about questions such as: “Is the foundation of Theological education based on accomplishing God’s mission or other?” and “What is God’s mission, really?” Seminaries typically are focused on producing academics and sometimes less on developing practical leaders with passion and tools to lead the church.

Our partners shared that there is often a lack of focus on the local church and practical education. The teaching is not always “contextualized”, i.e., what worked in a North American context in the past, may not be the best for the current Latin situation. While more women than men (El Salvador) are studying at a graduate level, there are few pastoral positions for them to fill. One church leader shared “We have the pillars of systemic theology, practical ministry with God’s mission is presented as another theme but nothing is integrated. If we teach this disconnection, how can we expect students to connect these pillars in their ministry. “

One participant from our Guatemala partner ACEBG (small denomination of 30 churches) shared, “We realize that we need to reimagine our approach to Theological Ed. I liked that the responses have come from us, in our culture. Each individual can reflect and contribute. Change begins with us and is not dependent on people from outside. We value the help that CBM can provide, to be exposed to other partners and ideas and to be accompanied as we go through the process of reforming Theological Education.”

Getting Out!

In collaboration with our partner the Convention of Baptist Churches of Guatemala (CIBG) we recently traveled to the Q’eqchi’ area in Peten and Alta Verapaz to meet leaders of 3 separate CIBG Associations and started the investigation of potential work in a different area of Guatemala.

The Q’eqchi’ are one of the 23 indigenous people groups in Guatemala. The church is growing rapidly – church membership is measured in “number of families” but in numbers we relate to more easily, memberships of 500 upwards to 1700 members are common! The Q’eqchi language has no resemblance to Spanish, so a good reminder of what it is like to off balance and not understand what is being said. While it is such a privilege to be invited into people’s homes, lives and ministry, we were reminded of how exhausting and overwhelming it can be to get your bearings in a new culture and language on top of not having control of when and what you will be eating each day, long drives between churches, “interesting” hotels and early starts to every day.


We are thankful for this reminder of being stretched and challenged while experiencing new things as we gear up to receive visitors through SENT 2023. After a 3 year pause on travel, our Canadian church partners are preparing to come to learn about faith and life in Cuba, DR, Guatemala, EL Salvador and Bolivia. We are excited to be able to facilitate these trips that allow for Canadian church supporters to experience firsthand the initiatives of the local church around children’s education, leadership training, economic activities, serving the local community and sharing God’s love in practical and tangible ways.

Our hope is always that these important connections will open people to experience God in new ways, to examine their relationship with their own church and community and consider how God may be speaking into how they connect with their own context. Of course, we do hope that all who come will continue, or even begin in some cases to advocate for and support the ongoing commitment that we have with our partner churches and communities.

Family Update

We thank God for the safe arrival of our 8th grandchild, Lenna Audrey Soucy, born May 14, our son Ben and daughter in law Elissa’s first baby. We were able to be with them for a few weeks during their early days as parents! We have also had visits with our daughter Laura and her family here in Guatemala, with our daughter Caroline and her family in NB and Kathleen’s 99-year-old mother in Halifax! Our family connections are so important to us and like most of the world we have missed them during these past 2 years.

Please pray for:

  •  Our partners, that the conversations around Theological Education will lead to respectful, God-led collaboration as we support leadership training.
  • The growing churches in the Q’eqchi’ areas of Guatemala (Peten & Alta Verapaz). That our work together would be strategic and impactful as the local churches join God where He is working.
  • For both Canadian church members and our partner churches in LA and the Caribbean as they prepare to send and receive and send back teams through CBM’s SENT program. That God would speak into their lives and that each one would be impacted by their experience and able to share with others what they have learned.
  • For our CBM global and national staff – for health, for personal growth as they minister where God has placed each one. Pray specifically for Kathryn Scott, new Global Field Staff arriving in Guatemala October 14. Pray that she would settle into her home stay with a language school in Antigua, meet future friends and stay healthy and have a good experience with the inevitable culture shock we all face.

We wish you all a blessed Fall season as you settle into new routines.


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