BIMI missionaries first arrived in Bolivia in1965. Since that time, an aggressive church planting ministry has produced the establishment of scores of churches in various regions of Bolivia. A countrywide celebration was held in 2015 to commemorate 50 years of BIMI ministry in Bolivia. Delegates attended from more than 40 churches that have been planted as a result of those pioneer missionaries who arrived in the mid-to-late 1960s.
Bolivia’s varied terrain stretches from the Andes Mountains to the Atacama Desert to the Amazon Basin Rainforest. At an altitude of more than 11,400 feet, La Paz, Bolivia’s administrative capital, is situated on the Andes’ Altiplano or plateau (highlands), surrounded by snowcapped mountains. Close by is Lago Titicaca, the South American continent’s largest lake, overlapping Bolivia’s border with Peru. Titicaca is the world's highest lake navigable to large vessels, situated at 12,500 feet above sea level in the Andes Mountains. The Bolivian Altiplano is also home to the Salar de Uyuni, the world’s largest salt flat, covering an expanse of more than 46,000 square miles.
One of only two landlocked countries on the continent, Bolivia is geographically divided into two main regions—the eastern lowlands and the highlands to the west. One of the poorest countries economically in all of South America, Bolivia has a population of more than 11 million inhabitants whose greatest need is for someone to help them rise out of deep spiritual poverty. Although there are great social differences that exist among the Bolivian people because of their diverse cultural backgrounds, they are all united in their common need of salvation.
Currently, there are two BIMI missionary families ministering in the city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia’s largest city, located in the eastern lowlands. Santa Cruz’s population exceeds 1.4 million inhabitants. Jake and Sharon Wiebe have been in Santa Cruz for more than 25 years. Luke and Jessica Marie have served in Bolivia since 2008. More missionaries are immediately needed to work in both the urban areas and in the mostly forgotten rural areas of the Andean highlands. Also, urgently needed are men and women with pioneering spirits who would be willing to learn the Quechua or Aymara languages in addition to Spanish, which would allow them to work with these neglected people groups.
In 1997, our missionaries established a Bible school in the city of Santa Cruz. This has allowed our personnel to intensify the training of national leadership for ministry positions. Since its inception, the school has graduated more than 75 students, most of whom are currently serving in various ministries all around the country. Souls are being saved every week and new churches are being planted every year.
Would you help us pray for more missionaries for Bolivia? Perhaps the Lord will use you to reach souls in this spiritually needy country. Who will go to the dozens of cities, towns, and villages all across Bolivia that are without any Gospel witness?