Four Testimonies from Leaders in the CPD
Testimony from Edgar castro
Today, I would like to share my personal experience at the CPD and the experiences of some other brethren.
When they called me to work at the CPD, I personally believed it would be challenging for me, because within me, I knew about my limitations, such as my English accent and being a Hispanic. I knew that the CPD never had a Hispanic person as a part of the staff, which was scary for me.
Every day, I came to work, expecting that one of my Anglo-American colleagues would be telling me something negative about my English accent or my origin, but that never happened. All District staff, without exception, have always have seen me, and continue to treat me, not as a Hispanic, but as their brother in Christ.
Later, I got to know more and more people, pastors, and leaders who always made me feel like part of the family.
Testimony from Carlos and Mercedes Palacios:
About three years ago, someone introduced me to a wonderful couple, Carlos and Mercedes Palacios. They had already worked as pastors for many years in another denomination, and Carlos was very excited to learn more about the C&MA.
On one occasion, I invited him and his wife to the Central Pacific District Conference (Encounter), and Carlos told me that he was very interested in attending the conference. Still, for his wife, it would be tough to go due to her past experiences. She had participated in other events of the previous denomination in which they were pastors, and the Anglo-American people never spoke to her because she only speaks Spanish. I insisted they attend, and finally, they agreed to join us at Encounter in Pismo Beach, CA.
The first day at the event, there was a moment of prayer, and some Anglo-American sisters approached Mercedes and asked her if they could pray with her. You can probably imagine Mercedes' answer; she told them, "Sorry, no English."
The reaction from these sisters broke all language or ethnic differences. They responded with a big and long hug and said with a broken Spanish, "We do not care if you do not speak English, You are our sister." Mercedes began to cry and said to her husband, "Carlos, this is the place where I have felt most loved and welcomed; we have to be part of this family."
The rest is history, Carlos and Mercedes are the pastors of Cristo Salva in Chico, CA and Carlos was also chosen in Hawaii to be part of DEXCOM. God is Good!
Testimony from Pastor Manuel Peniche of El Renuevo Church:
In uncertainties God uses the body of Christ to bless people, even other churches.
El Renuevo Church in Woodland, CA. wanted to share that the offering which an English speaking Church, Neighborhood Church of Chico, sent to El Renuevo, a Hispanic church, was a huge blessing as it came at the right time.
For several weeks most of the families in our church were struggling financially, and we did not receive any offerings or tithes at all. When the financial support came, we were able to cover our necessary expenses such as rent and even help some families.
We pray to God to continue blessing your lives and ministry as well.
Pastor Manuel Peniche
El Renuevo Comunidad Cristiana
Testimony from Pastor Lucas Kiryk of Renew Church:
In May, Renew Church began the project, Miracles in a Time of Pandemic, to resource the needs of our community in Visalia.
After having distributed 200 boxes of fruits and vegetables, we noticed many people wanted prayer. We had a team in Spanish, ready to pray for the needs of our community. However, we did not have volunteers who speak English to help us pray for those English speakers.
The Parkside Church supported us by adding a group from their church to pray in English. We have reached 800 families, distributed more than 10,000 pounds of fruits and vegetables, gave away more than 400 Bilingual Bibles (English-Spanish), and prayed for more than 500 people.
For the love of our community, Parkside Chapel and Renew Church have come along as one team to serve the Lord, forgetting the language barriers or cultural diversity. Renew Church is grateful to Parkside Chapel for its partnership, love, and unconditional support in reaching out those in need. God is working in our community.
Pastor Lucas Kiryk
In light of the current social protests and discussions that are happening around the country, I want to say:
Thank you, Alliance Family, for seeing my family, my people, and myself not as a person from another country or with different skin color, but as your brother in Christ.
-Edgar Castro, Central Pacific District