Global Ministries

The United Methodist Church

Connecting the Church in Mission

Veronica F. Apecena

Serving At: Bella Unión

Location: Uruguay, Latin America and the Caribbean

Home Country: United States of America, North America

Spouse: Adrian F. Apecena

Veronica Apecena.jpgVeronica Fe Apecena is a missionary with the General Board of Global Ministries of The United Methodist Church serving in social and health ministries in Bella Unión, Uruguay, a mission of the Methodist Church in Uruguay. She was commissioned in October 2015.

Veronica’s work is part of an emphasis on Methodist church development in Uruguay’s northern border area, where it meets Argentina and Brazil. The Methodist Church in Uruguay has a community of some 5,000 people, concentrated mostly in the southern part of the country around Montevideo. Federico Apecena, her husband and also a missionary, is a church developer in the border region.

Bella Unión is a sugarcane center and the poorest city in the country. The cane industry results in respiratory ailments and cuts and burns but Bella Unión has limited health facilities. A clinic, established years ago by Global Ministries, is now maintained by churches in Montevideo and has received supplies from Save the Children. There is a small Methodist church in Bella Unión. Veronica works with the local leadership, the clinic, and others to coordinate health and social service ministries.

Veronica is originally from Colorado, but at the time she entered mission service was living in North Carolina, where her husband had attended seminary at Duke University. She graduated from high school in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Veronica earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish from Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado and, earlier, a certificate from Peniel Seminary, a Bible college in Mar del Plata, Argentina, where she studied part time while living there for a year and a half in the early 2000s.

She developed a deep interest in Argentina and a desire to be in mission there as a 16-year-old accompanying her mother to a Christian conference in that country. During college, she traveled extensively, including two semesters in Morocco, growing in faith and developing an especially keen concern for the welfare of homeless children. She and Fede married a year after she graduated from college and spent five years “gaining experience in working with children, serving our church, and the marginalized in our community.”

“I took advantage of the opportunities afforded me in order to continue to have contact with people of different cultures and ways of life…God revealed another piece of my calling through the awareness I have gained and the friendships I have made. God has blessed me with gifts that can be used in mission, such as my passion for learning language and gaining from different cultures. I am adaptable and good with change.”

Veronica and Fede have one young child, Kin, born in 2010 and adopted from Hong Kong when he was four-and-a-half years old.

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