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The Lutheran Church, Faith and Hope of Nicaragua
Iglesia Luterana Fe y Esperanza de Nicaragua (ILFE)

The Faith and Hope Lutheran Church of Nicaragua (Iglesia Luterana Fe y Esperanza – ILFE) is a member of the Lutheran World Federation and the Communion of Central American Lutheran Churches (CILCA). ILFE is present in approximately 35 Nicaraguan communities, the majority located in the northern and western parts of the country (Somoto and Chinandega) and served by lay pastors who live in or near these communities. In its holistic model for mission, ILFE focuses on lay leadership development, specialized ministries for children, pre-teens and youth, preventive health care, HIV & AIDS awareness, sustainable agriculture and disaster prevention & response.

Missionary:  Rev. Dra. Claudia Soliette López Ortega

Rev. Dra. Claudia Soliette López Ortega

Pastor Soliette is our South Dakota Synod missionary to the ILFE. She hosts travelers from South Dakota and assists them while they meet church members and look at various projects. She helps with the youth and health ministry of the church. Our costs for her salary and her travel within Nicaragua and visits to South Dakota are about $9500 US per year. Please consider supporting us in this important work.

Annual Lutheran Youth Camp

Early In January during the school vacation each year from 40 to 80 youth from the city of Managua and many other small cities and villages travel to Managua to take part in the Lutheran Youth Camp. The cost of transport, housing, and food averages about $80 per participant. This camp is an excellent outreach to the young people. It is a chance to renew friendships, to learn about sports, health, furthering their career formation, and Bible study. We challenge you and your congregation to join these young people (Please limit your numbers to 4 youth per congregation, with a preference for those who have studied Spanish at least 2 years). Our synod budgets a goal of $10,000 US each year to support the Iglesia Luterana Fe e Esperanza at this Camp. Please consider supporting our efforts

Pastors’ Retreat and Training Facility

Iglesia Luterana Fe e Esperanza (ILFE) operates a farm, retreat, and training facility on the outskirts of Managua. It is called Cedro Galan. Cedro Galan is able to provide a better standard of hospitalility to small groups of 6 to 12 people. Our missionary, Pastor Soliette, is able to assist you in making arrangements for housing at Cedro Galan.

Green Project Cedro Galan:

The Green Project uses Cedro Galan for headquarters, but it attempts to help farmers modernize resources for agricultural development throughout villages in Nicaragua. It conducts training sessions and outreach on grafting trees, planting and water management techniques, and ecology. There is a small seed bank which helps Nicaraguans in case of disaster. Current technicians working with the Green Project are Ilo and Angel Diaz. Our South Dakota Synod attempts to support these efforts with gifts of up to about $20,000 US each year as our contributions allow.

Sponsorship of Nicaraguan Delegations to SD

ILFE and the SD synod would like to make delegation trips more mutual- not only sending South Dakotans down to Nicaragua, but sending Nicaraguans up to South Dakota as well.  Example delegations might be sending Nicaraguan pastors and leaders to SD to give workshops or training sessions.  It could be sending Nicaraguans to the SD Synod Assembly.  It might be sending Nicaraguan leaders to provide enrichment for South Dakota’s new Latino outreach ministries.  The idea is to allow South Dakotans and Nicaraguans to walk together on both sides of the border.

Scheduling A Trip to Nicaragua

“…by God’s will I may come to you with joy and be refreshed in your company.” – Romans 15:32

“Getting to know my brothers and sisters in Christ in Cameroon and Nicaragua has been an uplifting and grace filled experience.” – Cindy Hansen, South Dakota

No special skills are required to be walk in companionship with our brothers and sisters in Christ.  Medical teams include doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals.  Companionship teams include anyone who wishes to share in the joy of meeting new friends and sharing God’s love with others.

Medical teams and Companionship teams travel to Nicaragua. The visit lasts about 1-2 weeks, and the cost for a trip is about $1300.

Does traveling to Nicaragua appeal to you as something that you or your congregation may wish to participate in?  Groups or individuals wishing to travel to Nicaragua are requested to contact the Synod Office for assistance and direction to help make travel a truly great experience.


  • $750-$950 (the average price of plane ticket from SD to Managua)
  • $150 per person, left as a donation to ILFE, used for vehicle repairs, and other expenses of hosting delegations
  • $250 per person, pooled together at the beginning of the trip to cover gas, all meals, entrance fees if any, etc.
  • $50 sent directly to the SD synod to help fund the missionary in Nicaragua
  • Extra spending money for snacks, souvenirs, etc.
  • Possible extra costs would be passport purchase/ renewal if yours expires within 6 months of travel, medical costs of visiting a travel clinic to see if immunizations or anti-malarial pills are recommended, etc.)

Download the Nicaragua Travel Book

For information about the South Dakota Synod’s Companion Synods Program

Contact the synod office at 605-274-4011.