For twelve years, Hispanos and Mexican migrant workers have been worshipping on Sunday afternoons on the corner of Maxwell and Russell Streets.
Starting in July, worship will take place in a downtown storefront location on Christina Street. Formerly this group was a congregation of New Horizons but since last July and the planned retirement of its then pastor, lengthy discussion has been ongoing about the future of the ministry. The ministry grew in the fall from a mainly migrant worker ministry to include permanent residents from a variety of Hispanic countries.
Commitments for on-going support gradually fell though and the board asked the congregation to accept certain terms or move. Transportation was eliminated, except for volunteers providing their own cars, promises of support, supervision and encouragement also were withdrawn. Worship patterns of other cultures such as fellowship, worship style and longer services were seen as inconveniences. A Bible study at work sites, a huge Father’s day outreach event simply ended leaving workers wondering why. For 9 years, members of the former host church made trips to Mexico to visit wives and families of workers, to bring food, clothing, bibles, craft supplies and teaching to those communities. There now no longer is support for such ministry or reasons to connect with pastors in Mexico. Unfortunately four years of work to establish a church plant In El Saucillo, Mexico have been terminated.
Let us remember it is Christ Jesus who binds a people together as a church in which God lives by his Spirit. Eph. 2:21, 22.