Bethany House in Chile Requests our Prayers

Bethany House in Chile Requests our Prayers

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Bethany House is part of the social ministry of the Pentecostal Church of Chile, long-term ecumenical partner of this historic Massachusetts Conference. Known in Spanish as Hogar de Ancianos Betania, we might describe this ministry as a nursing home, but it is much more. It is a community and a service of the church. Today the staff and residents need our prayers.

After months of successfully protecting residents and staff of Bethany House from the COVID-19, the virus arrived in the last two weeks. Its impact has been severe, affecting staff and residents. Two residents have died, others have been hospitalized, and those who have not been exposed have been moved to safety in other facilities. Richard Muñoz, the administrator of the home and the son of former Bishop Ulises Muñoz, has asked for prayers from the congregations of the Southern New England Conference of the United Church of Christ.

The ministry of Bethany House reflects the respect and care that the Pentecostal Church of Chile has for the elderly. It was one of the first major projects of the church after Ulises Muñoz became bishop in the early 1990s. Its location adjoining the church’s national cathedral speaks to its significance for the church. From the start, the historic Massachusetts Conference has been a partner in this project, providing support as the home developed. Delegations from the United States often visit the home as part of learning about the ministry of the Pentecostal Church of Chile.

Bethany House’s residents include some of the earliest members of the Pentecostal Church of Chile. All of the residents are addressed with the affectionate term, abuelitos y abuelitas (little grandfathers and grandmothers). Local congregations regularly offer support for holidays and special occasions, contributing to the sense of community within Bethany House.  

Please hold the residents, staff, and administration of Bethany House and the entire Pentecostal Church of Chile in your prayers during these difficult days.

Photo of the oldest resident of Bethany House reciting a poem from memory at an anniversary celebration of the home in 2017, provided by Chris Ney.

Author

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Christopher Ney

Christopher Ney is chair of the Chile Partnership Committee of the SNEUCC and Pastor of the Central Congregational Church (Newburyport).  He is seen here with Bishop Ulises Munoz, former President of the Pentecostal Church of Chile.

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