Intentionality is the key to accomplish any goal. This was demonstrated with the evangelistic series, We All Have Problems Hope. All of the Hispanic Adventist churches in the greater Chattanooga, Tenn., area worked together to share hope in Jesus this past February. More than 60 people were baptized, 100 more are having Bible studies, and 70 more have already made decisions for Jesus prior to the February meetings.
Directed by the Ministerial and Evangelism Ministries departments at the Southern Union, and the Latin-American Ministries of Georgia-Cumberland Conference, the events focused on Hispanic communities, and were carefully planned in 2017. The event involved pastors and their congregations from Calhoun, Ga., north to Cleveland, Tenn. Church members were key, holding meetings, workshops, and trainings month after month until everyone was ready to fulfill their part of the plan.
Intentionally, the church members established relationships within their communities through a Season of Service. Surveying the need in their respective areas, members impacted their communities, rendering services from cleaning houses to feeding the homeless to visiting nursing homes. With a T-shirt that identified them as members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, they knocked on neighborhood doors and offered to help. In disbelief, people asked why they were helping; their response was, “Because Jesus loves you, and so do we.”
Today these communities know who the Adventists are, where their closest church is, and what they did and are still doing. Hector Hernandez, pastor of the Cleveland, Tenn., Hispanic Church, brought breakfast on cold mornings in January to immigrants waiting at stops to get hired. One has visited his church and another, who used to be an Adventist, decided to return to church. Bible workers were then brought in to introduce Bible studies to these newly made friends, and dozens and dozens of studies were initiated.
Next came 40 Days of Prayer. Forty days before the week of the evangelistic series, prayer warriors connected early in the morning, every day, to pray for specific campaign needs — prayers for the invitations, the computers, and the audiovisual equipment. More prayers were given for the Holy Spirit to touch non-believers’ hearts and compel them to attend the series, as well as prayers for the guest speakers. Every day pastors and church members joined through a conference call to pray. Diego Jimenez, coordinator of the 40 Days of Prayer, said, “It was such a blessing to be part of the prayer call every day, and meet with very spiritual pastors and members pursuing the Holy Spirit, and share how God led us to open doors that had been closed and accept Bible studies.”
Finally, the evangelistic series started at each church, with different guest speakers from Sabbath to Wednesday. Thursday to Sabbath more than 1,100 people gathered in a facility in Chattanooga. The children had a program with leader Jorge Quintiana, pastor of the Chattanooga Hispanic Community Church. He said, “Hundreds of children were served and taught about the fruits of the spirit, but the church itself was the most blessed, and now they are motivated to keep intentionally working with the children’s ministry and other church ministries as well.”
Roger Hernandez, director of Southern Union ministerial and evangelism, was the main speaker for the last four nights joint meeting in Chattanooga. Special music was provided by Jose Medina and Maribel Soto. Through the theme “Jesus is Greater than Your Problem,” Hernandez attracted people to Jesus as their only Hope.
This event was a part of the 2018 Georgia-Cumberland Conference initiative to have simultaneous meetings in all churches. Please continue to pray for the people who have made decisions for Jesus, and those who are still searching.
Georgia-Cumberland | April 2018