United in Ministry
CORRALES, N.M. – Despite adhering to “stay at home” and social distancing recommendations this spring, it has been amazing to see churches in the Texico Conference come together during the COVID-19 pandemic. Pastors and congregations quickly mobilized to continue to minister while their churches remained closed. Some members felt the call to help the community directly. Lissey Vancil, a member of North Valley Seventh-day Adventist Church, hand-made colorful masks and donated them to a family clinic in Taos.
Most churches used various online platforms and social media to engage their members in creative worship experiences, while others used more traditional methods like making phone calls and sending emails and text messages.
“Last year, I learned a lot about digital missionary work and the positive spiritual impact it can have,” said Mike Razon, youth director. “It has been exciting to see that in the midst of these challenging times, many of our Texico members and leaders have become digital missionaries overnight.”
Jorge Morales, pastor of several churches in Southern New Mexico, found himself wanting to reach out to the kids of his church in the same way he was doing with the adults.
“As I was preparing for my first online sermon, I kept wondering how social distancing was affecting kids,” said Morales. “It was then that the story of Jesus calming the storm came to me. I immediately grabbed my whiteboard and started drawing and writing.”
That Sabbath, Morales told kids the story of when Jesus calmed the storm and presented his white board. He invited them to draw a boat like the one Jesus was in and write a Bible promise or text that would bring them comfort the next time they felt scared. Morales received several online pictures from kids in his churches and one from as far away as Puerto Rico. Since then, Morales has continued to engage his younger audience in activities with valuable lessons.
While the coronavirus may have forced many of us to make dramatic changes in our daily routines, there is no question that even in the toughest times, God has no limit to what He can do through His people.
By Debby Marquez