The General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM) is thrilled to announce a new partnership to bring Spanish-language editions of popular GBHEM Publishing titles to six Latin American countries. The agreement begins with one book and will ideally expand over time. It is a targeted effort by the agency’s publishing house to tear down linguistic and financial barriers that often prevent United Methodist publications from reaching a wider audience outside the United States.
This fall, GBHEM Publishing signed an agreement with Rev. Juan Eduardo Guerrero Pulido to begin printing GBHEM Publishing books in Colombia. The agreement will drastically improve the agency’s ability to bring important theological and practical texts to Latin American readers. Guerrero’s press in Colombia will be able to sell books directly to local audiences as well as in Costa Rica, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Panamá and Honduras.
Right now, the cost of shipping books outside the United States is so high that it makes the price of the books prohibitive for many audiences.
“Having a local printer who can publish and sell our books on the ground in Latin America will make them accessible and affordable to a much larger audience,” said Jennifer Rogers, associate publisher for GBHEM Publishing.
Guerrero is a United Methodist pastor as well as a Christian publisher and he has conducted similar publishing agreements with the Upper Room. The first GBHEM title published through his press will be “Los mentores como instrumentos del llamado de Dios,” by Justo L. González.
For Guerrero, whose thesis advisor was Justo González, the quest to share new ideas and theological discussions is personal. He sees his work as a ministry of service.
“When I was pursuing my doctorate, I bought some books through Amazon and brought them back from the United States to Colombia, and they were terribly expensive. I am glad that I can now print this book by Justo, and I hope to sell it for a small fraction of what it costs in the United States,” said Guerrero.
A successful partnership in Latin America could provide a model for similar local agreements in areas of Africa and Asia that have been difficult for GBHEM Publishing to reach.
“Our agreement with Rev. Guerrero will be an important blueprint for us moving forward,” said Dr. Kathy Armistead, GBHEM Publisher. “The ability to print locally or regionally is so important in terms of cost savings that we hope to be able to replicate this effort in other areas of the world where the cost of shipping prevents us from selling books.”
Though the agreement with Guerrero begins with just one book, both parties hope to continue expanding the list of publications in the spring. The next likely title for Latin American publication is a second book by Justo L. González, “Juan Wesley y la reforma protestante: Entre Lutero y Calvino.”
“It is a blessing to be able to partner with GBHEM, to make valuable books available to the many poor people in Latin America at a price they can afford,” said Guerrero.
The first print run of the Latin American edition of “Los mentores como instrumentos del llamado de Dios” is expected in February of 2020.
About GBHEM: The General Board of Higher Education and Ministry embraces the ministry of learning and leadership formation in The United Methodist Church and the Wesleyan tradition; serving Christians around the world who are shaped by a process of intellectual engagement, spiritual and character formation, and leadership development. We cultivate a dynamic culture of call and vocational discernment that encourages lay and clergy leaders to discover, claim and flourish in God’s ministry and mission for the Church, the academy and the world. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook: @GBHEM.