ST. LOUIS (BP) — Tower Grove Baptist Church culminated a weeklong outreach in a nearby Hispanic community by launching its first-ever Spanish service.
Spanish-speaking students from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary engaged in door-to-door evangelism in the mostly Hispanic community called Cherokee during the yearly Crossover evangelistic emphasis prior to the Southern Baptist Convention’s annual meeting.
“It was great to share the Gospel with people who are culturally like me,” SWBTS student Carmen Jimenez said.
During their time spent in the Hispanic community, the students saw an array of human need.
“We encountered poverty, drugs, and overall a lack of God,” Jimenez said.
However, she and her classmates were encouraged because people were open and ready to hear about God.
Chad Logan, Tower Grove’s education and worship pastor, is leading the church’s Cherokee outreach.
“Pray for us because we want to reach the Hispanics in our community with the Gospel…. There are lots of Hispanics who need to hear about God,” he said.
Logan and his wife Keyesy were missionaries with the International Mission Board in England and Spain for seven years, the latter assignment having nurtured their Spanish language skills.
Tower Grove’s first Spanish service June 12 was attended by 16 people, but none whom the seminarians had met during the week. Still, the group who attended prayed for those in the Cherokee community to hear the Gospel and be moved to seek more of God.
Elias Bracamonte, vice president of the National Hispanic Baptist Fellowship and associate pastor of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Topeka, Kan., preached the Sunday sermon, focusing on the importance of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.
Following the Sunday service, the church hosted a block party for the community which included food, bounce houses and an indoor skating rink, among other activities.
Brandon Kiesling, instructor of evangelism in Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary’s Roy Fish School of Evangelism and Missions, led the group of seminarians during their stay in St. Louis.
The experience stirred the students toward a desire to do the same kind of door-to-door evangelism back home, Kiesling noted.
In addition to Cherokee, a larger group of seminarians witnessed in Shaw and Tower Grove South communities.
In total, Southwestern students visited 5,098 homes, engaged in 657 Gospel conversations and saw 104 professions of faith.
National Baptist Hispanic Fellowship
Later on June 12, Tower Grove also hosted the National Baptist Hispanic Fellowship’s pre-SBC time of prayer and fellowship.
Attendees heard an update from Guillermo Soriano, consultant for Hispanic evangelism and discipleship for the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, on the SBC Hispanic Leaders and Pastors Network and the website — www.redcbs.org — that launched on April 27.
Soriano explained that the website would serve as a means of communication for Hispanic pastors and leaders from around the nation. He added that the website would help them stay informed and help each other by fostering partnerships.
Ramon Osorio, national church mobilizer with NAMB, preached the gathering’s sermon, encouraging the church to set itself apart in preparation for revival and awakening.
“No revival or awakening is brought on by human will,” Osorio said. “Revival and awakening are in God’s time, when it is His will to do so.
“Brethren, set yourself apart,” he said, voicing his belief that “God will do great things” among Hispanic Baptists.