Venezuela Caracas Mission


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Description

Snapshot of Venezuela – Spanish is the primary official language of Venezuela, though several other indigenous languages are also present within the country. Portuguese is also spoken in areas bordering Brazil. Over 90% of Venezuela’s population belongs to the Roman Catholic Church, though other Protestant religions are also present. Most of the population lives in urban areas in the north of the country. Venezuela has been considered a “melting pot” nation, with many different cultural influences present. Indigenous, Spanish, African, and other European cultures have all contributed to the culture of Venezuela today. Popular festivals include Corpus Christi, which include parades, dancing, and elaborate costumes. Gaita Zuliana, Venezuelan rock, salsa, and calypso are popular musical styles in Venezuela. Baseball is the most popular sport in Venezuela, though basketball and soccer are also popular.

Caracas, Venezuela.

Caracas, Venezuela.

We are still collecting information on the Venezuela Caracas Mission. If you served in this mission and are willing to share your experiences with us, please contact us at editor@missionhome.com.

 

 

The Church

Venezuela was dedicated for the preaching of the restored Gospel in 1966; the country has rapidly expanded since. As of October 2013, the country held 157,795 members in four different missions, with 281 total congregations. In addition, there are four family history centers and one temple. Church membership in Venezuela has tripled within the past decade–what a wonderful time to be a missionary in Venezuela!

Food

Meat (including beef, goat, chicken, and rabbit), corn, rice and beans, and plantains are common elements of Venezuelan meals. Fish and seafood dishes are common in coastal areas. Popular dishes include pabellón criollo (rice and black beans served with shredded beef), polenta (a cornmeal porridge often served with sausage), and pastitsio (a lasagna-like dish made with pasta and ground beef) and patacon (it is a plantain stuffed with cheese, meat and vegetables.)

Transportation

Metro Bus, Caracas, Venezuela. By Guillermo Ramos Flamerich,  Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.

Metro Bus, Caracas, Venezuela. By Guillermo Ramos Flamerich, Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.

Most people travel either by car or by public transportation. Missionaries usually take the public transportation or walk. You will need comfortable and durable shoes. The public transportation is pretty good in Venezuela.

Safety

Venezuela is a pretty safe country. The Venezuelan people are very kind and love the gospel. In a very short time time the church has grown dramatically.  Like every country  there are some less safe parts, but the mission advises of these. Be safe everywhere you go and follow the mission rules.

Customs

Venezuela has a lot of Spanish (from Spain) influence. A lot of the architecture, music, and dances come from Spain. The festivals are very colorful and very well lit. Some popular festivals include: Drumming Feast of St. John, La Paradura del Nino, and Carnival. Carnival is celebrated every year in February forty days before Easter.

Local Lingo

Spanish is the language of Venezuela. There are some local expressions and a few different terms, but you will learn everything you need to know in the MTC or in the mission field. As you speak with the locals you will learn the expressions quickly.

Essential Equipment

Venezuela is a walking mission. You will need good shoes and a good bag. You can find everything you need in the country.

Additional Info

Mailing times and prices are similar to other Latin American countries. Packages to Venezuela take 2 to 4 weeks to arrive. DHL and FedEx are more reliable services but also more expensive. For more information, you can visit The United Postal Service website for Venezuela.

 

Flag of Venezuela Caracas Mission

Profile

Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic Of
President Fernando Vivas

Urb. Chuao, Calle La Estancia, Edif.
Centro Bonaven
Torre B, Piso 1, Oficina 14 B
Caracas , Distrito Capital
Venezuela

Spanish
2,104,000
Catholic, Protestant
Venezuela has many different climates because of the different topography. It tends to be a tropical temperate climate but ranges from alpine to tropical humid climates.
Caracas

Alumni: http://www.mission.net/venezuela/caracas/

Experiences

Straight from the Venezuela Caracas Mission:

*What items were hard to get or not available?
“Almost everything was available at the time except for luxuries such as maple extract and root beer.”

“Peanut Butter”

*What did you eat the most of?
“We at a lot of rice, black beans, plantain bananas, chicken, mangoes, avocados and begets. We also drank a lot of soda pop.”

“Rice, chicken, arepas.”

*What is the craziest thing you ate?
“Not sure, meaning I ate things that I was not familiar with. However, we had fish soup and once I ate an arabic meal with peta bread and uncooked meats.”

“Fish Heads.”

*What was most surprising about the culture?
“The shanty towns.”

*What advice would you give to someone going to the Venezuela Caracas Mission?
“Love the people and trust the Lord.”
-Scott

“Love the people.”
-Sharon

*What do you wish you had known before you served?
“I wish I had known more about day-to-day missionary work. I grew up in an area where there were no full-time missionaries.”
-Scott

“A better knowledge of the basic gospel principles as found in the scriptures.”
-Sharon

*Other comments?
“After about 6 weeks out, my companion and I were walking down streets and I was telling her how I was going to tell everybody who told me ‘It’s the best two years of your life’ just exactly what I thought of their lie. Missions are hard: new culture, new language, hard work, hot sun, I could have gone on and on and on. What did I do when I got home? I super excited when anyone announced their plans to go on a mission and told them that my mission was the best 18 months of my life. Why discourage them by listing the challenges? The things I learned on my mission about the Lord, myself, the gospel, and others were worth any price.”
-Sharon