One of the questions I like to ask churches (and ask myself) is this: How do we as a church reach totally un-churched, unsaved people, with the purpose of developing a friendship and telling them about Jesus?
You may know that we’ve been doing community center activities as a ministry outreach for a long time. Something like 6 or 7 years. Even before that, we did creative outreach events, we just didn’t call it community center outreach.
But there was one big problem. Most (not all, but most) of the outreach was missionary driven. Most of the teachers were from the missionary team here. We are in the middle of a semester of community center classes in Palmas 1. Our missionary team offers English, guitar, baking and craft classes on a weekly basis.
But now every Saturday we also offer 6 total hours of community center activities led and taught by Mexican church members. From 9-11 a.m., Samuel is giving a college exam prep class, with a focus on Math, Science and Chemistry. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Melanie gives an adult and kids English class. During this same time period, Jonathan (with the support of 5-7 other guys from the church) are doing an 8-week soccer league, using a format learned from Mark, Mike and the Unchartered Waters staff.
Teachers receive a modest donation through the non-profit for each hour taught.
Today, Samuel had 11 students in his class. Another 12 people attended the English class, and 28 kids were involved in the soccer league. The large majority of people attending these courses are not from our church. Which is exactly what we desire.
The front wall of the property in Jesus Maria just got a face lift! More and more people have begun to realize that we exist to do all we can to benefit them as a community. Through classes. Through wheelchairs. Through counseling. Through math. Motivated by the love of God, who loves them also!