Obituary: Floredilia Graterol

Floredilia “Flor” Graterol, Covenant pastor and chaplain at Centro Hispano de Estudios Teológicos (CHET), died last week. She was 63.

She was found unresponsive at home by a friend on New Year’s Eve.  The official cause of death is yet to be determined.

Flor was born February 6, 1957, in Caracas, Venezuela. She developed a love of education early while attending a Catholic boarding school. The devotion of the nuns inspired her to live her life for God in a way that would benefit others. At the nuns’ urging, she earned her teaching credentials and taught in an elementary school before health issues forced her to leave that position.

Flor’s father encouraged her to travel to England where she could study English as well as graphic arts. She lived there for three years before moving to Paris to study French. She learned other languages as she traveled. During her time in Paris, she was befriended by a missionary couple whom she said re-ignited her faith.

At that time, the economy in Venezuela worsened, which meant she was unable to continue her education and she was forced to return home. Later, she was inspired to attend the Billy Graham/Luis Palau Hispanic Crusade in Los Angeles and stayed in the United States afterward.

She felt called to teach the Bible to others and started attending CHET after meeting then-president Jorge Maldonado. She completed the two-year, 30-unit basic program there, then began tutoring students in that program. She also completed CHET’s 90-unit ministerial program as well as a counseling program.

Flor was named the school’s chaplain in 2007 while she pursued her Bachelor of Ministry degree at CHET, which she received in 2009. Upon her installation, she said, “It’s like God is touching you on the shoulder and saying you are doing good.”

Flor was ordained in 2014. She went on to earn a Master of Divinity from Fuller Theological Seminary in 2019.

She was a founding member of the church plant core group of El Encino Covenant Church, saying at the time, “I feel that there is no better place than the Evangelical Covenant Church to fill this call that is so deeply inside my heart.”

She had been serving as lead pastor at Emmanuel Covenant Church in Northridge, California, while continuing to serve as the CHET chaplain.

Services are pending.

 

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8 Comments

  1. Flor and I had several classes together at Fuller, we had the opportunity to share life experiences between one class and another, always accompanied by a good coffee or meal, as well small trips and the intimacy of my home. These moments were enough to establish a strong and deep sisterhood. It will be difficult to accept that you are no longer around my dear Flor.

  2. Flor was a good friend. We met in Caracas while we were representing the book of Revelations together in a theater play. She later went on to become the voice of the first evangelical radio program to air in a secular radio station in Venezuela which my father in law produced. In Los Angeles, we reconnected after many years and shared many coffees dreaming about using our talents and creativity to spread the gospel. She was a creative soul, full of ideas wrapped in love. She spent her life serving others with care and teaching many to follow our Lord. Flor, I will miss you a thousand times over. Until we meet again…

  3. Amada Hermana y Amiga 💝Floredilia Estoy muy agradecída por haber conocido tu Caminar con Nuestro Padre Celestial, Dejaste un legado Maravilloso Té Extraño!!!

  4. Dear Flor: I just learned about this and my heart breaks…you were so full of life and love and passion for the Lord…may you be in His arms, looking at Him with your beautiful eyes..my He say to you softly: good job my dear servant! We love you and will miss you…see you some day…the Lord knows…

  5. Flor’s life and story will continue to inspire and impact us all. What a strong willed woman she was and I was one of the many lives she was able to bless with her spirit. She will be missed.

    La historia de Flor continuara inspirando e impactando a todo nosotros. Era una mujer con una voluntad fuerte y fui una de las muchas vidas que pudo compartir con ella. La extrañaremos.

  6. Oh my sister Flor! My life was enriched by you! What wonderful memories of conferences and women’s retreats! Always a smile and always a word of encouragement! See you in heaven!!! Love you always! Karen❤️

  7. Although words cannot express the depth of our loss, this obituary is beautifully written! Flor had a huge and broad impact on so many. We rejoice in her union with Christ and our reunion in glory.

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