Growth in Spanish Churches Soars
As Gospel is Shared Across Community
2008 was a record breaking year for the Oregon Conference Department of Hispanic Ministries, which saw the number of Spanish SDA churches soar to 22. Among this group were the planting of four new churches; Beaverton, Keizer, Independence/Monmouth, and Milwaukie Spanish's "Remix" service, which is geared toward second generation, mostly English speaking Latino Adventists. Similarly, in 2009, the Woodburn SDA church will plant a second generation service, again targeting a younger audience. Both Milwaukie and Woodburn congregations hope to achieve similar success as that seen by "The Rock," a multicultural, 2nd generation church that has met at the Hillsboro Spanish SDA Church for several years.
The Hispanic Ministries Department is lead by Pastor Roger Hernandez, who--prior to his role at the Conference--pastored six years at one of the fastest growing congregations in the NAD, the Hillsboro Spanish SDA Church. The Hillsboro Church was named 2008's Most Innovative Church of the Year by the North American Division. This tremendous growth and achievement has been accomplished by the Holy Spirit leading many to share the gospel across their community. Associate director of the Church Resource Center, Dave Gemmell, reports, "Hillsboro Spanish offers health fairs, food banks, free hair cuts and worship opportunities that incorporate Mexican music and folk culture. These are just the beginning of ways that we can share the Gospel message. One in fifteen members of the local Spanish community now attends the church because of its community service ministries."