Since 2006, Missionary Servants have served the good people of Guamal, Colombia. Father Gilberto Rodriguez, S.T., is the first Missionary Servant pastor to serve the people of Parroquia Nuestra Senora Del Carmen (Our Lady of Carmen Parish). He is joined by fellow missionaries Father Orlando Bonilla and Brother César Muñoz.
The parish has one main church with 30 smaller chapels covering a 25-mile radius. The area is surrounded, and its life defined, by the Magdalena River, which frequently floods Guamal and the surrounding communities.
The resulting damage is extensive, both to the peoples’ home and their livelihoods. The flooding also makes the roads impassable except on foot and by motorcycle or boat. The vast majority of people make their living fishing or raising cattle and goats.
Thanks to you, the people of Guamal now have a dynamic pastoral team who cares for every aspect of their lives. Of course, our missionaries tend to the spiritual needs of the parishioners – traveling long distances to bring the Sacraments and the Word of God to the people. But they also tend to their physical needs when they can.
A feeding program for children now has three sites around the parish, providing a hot meal to more than 200 children every day. Youngsters who were missing school because they live too far away to walk now have bicycles to help them get to school. The elderly and handicapped were given shelter at the parish center after last year’s floods made their own homes unlivable. Every day, because of your support, our missionaries in Guamal are preaching the “Good News” of the Gospel both in word and action.