Mathias describes himself as a follower of Christ, husband, dad, chaplain, and person affected by leprosy and committed to fighting leprosy and its stigma. He is from Paraguay and his wife, Cynthia, a nurse, was born in the USA but has spent most of her life in Latin America. They have been married for over 10 years and have three children: Gabo, Nico and Alana.
Mathias was Pastor/Chaplain at Hospital Mennonita Km 81 until 2010, a reference hospital for leprosy in Paraguay. Mathias and his wife work with children, youth, seniors, men and women with disabilities in different churches and other organisations. He studied theology in Paraguay (BA) and in the USA (MDiv).
Click to listen to Mathias’ story told on YouTube here
In October 2010, Mathias was diagnosed with leprosy and completed MDT. In the last few years he has focused more on leprosy stigma and raising its awareness. He is due to publish a book about leprosy, stigma and the Bible. The main goal of the book is to help Christians (Catholic and Protestant) to understand leprosy and its stigma and to overcome it. Mathias has organised several meetings of religious leaders and spoken in churches and different media about leprosy and its stigma.