Texas Youth World Changers in El Salvador

February 13, 2024

ALVARADO, TEX. – A record number of 80 Texas Conference volunteers of all ages spent their Thanksgiving, Nov. 17-23, 2023, giving back to those in need.

Tasked with building a church in the rural town of El Jicaral, near San Miguel, El Salvador, the volunteers worked tirelessly on the project. They also held two health clinics, allowing community members to meet with a doctor, counselor or pastor. Treatment, medicine, clothes, toys, hygiene products and household items were given out.

“In addition to providing for their physical needs, we ran four simultaneous evangelistic meetings every night to provide for their spiritual needs,” Texas Conference Youth & Young Adult Ministries Director Christian Ponciano shared. “We had three Texas Conference pastors and one TXYouth lay evangelist preaching each evening.”

Volunteers organized the programs, from greeters to special music. “Our TXYouth World Changers were hard at work in evangelism,” Ponciano added. There were 20 baptisms or professions of faith after the meetings, with many more committed individuals whom they pray will be baptized.

“TXYouth believes in being the hands and feet of Jesus today,” Ponciano said. “We are passionate about mission and evangelism and are always looking for opportunities to serve and bring the light of Jesus to the world.”

“I am so proud of our Texas Conference family and the many volunteers who took their time to help in El Salvador,” Texas Conference President Elton DeMoraes said. “This was a very ambitious mission project, but they achieved their objectives. TXYouth are world changers working to change the world one mission at a time.”

According to Ponciano, the El Jicaral congregation met every Sabbath under a mango tree for three years. When a member donated a piece of his land, and the members purchased another piece of land, their dream was to build a sanctuary, but they didn’t have enough money.

The TXYouth volunteers left a functional standing building where the members could worship while protected from the elements.

You can find pictures from their trip at Flickr.com/texasadventist.