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Our Ministry to Spanish Speakers Turns Two

Our Ministry to Spanish Speakers Turns Two

by The Reverend Dr. Roman D. Roldan on July 03, 2024

TLDR: We have accomplished a great deal in this ministry, but we still have miles to go before we rest. Please read below for some information about our Ministry to Spanish Speakers. 

Our ministry to Spanish Speakers turns two years of age this month. We have much to celebrate and a few things to reassess. For starters, we now have a small but vibrant congregation with an average Sunday attendance of 23 to 30. The total size of that congregation, should everyone come to church on the same Sunday, would be between 50 and 60 people. This is impressive for such a young service. We have celebrated a large number of baptisms, several First-Communions, six Confirmations, and one Quinceaῆera. We had two teams from this service in our Holy Smokes Festival this year and both had a phenomenal time. We have celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month two years running, as well as the independence of seven Latin American countries whose independence falls in July. We welcomed the Diocesan prayer group Nacer de Nuevo to our campus and two of their members will attend our mission trip to Dominican Republic this month. Additionally, we have created a Spanish Bible Class and several Sunday school options for the children. We now have acolytes from within the service as well as lectors, and we will train service -specific ushers and Eucharistic ministers very soon.  

One of the areas that has required constant reassessment is the service time. We used to meet at 1:00pm, but this time did not afford us any opportunity for Sunday school, children’s chapel, or any interaction with the existing congregation. As a result, the few people in attendance felt isolated and their children were not getting much attention. To fix this problem, we moved the service to 9:01 about a year ago. The move in service time increased our Sunday attendance at the service, created opportunities for Sunday school, and allowed for potluck suppers and additional prayer time for folks in need. But this new service time was not without problems. 

Two months ago, several families met with Fr. Alvaro and I to share a problem some of their friends who were missing church were having. These families work six days a week, often in more than one job, and many of them live within a 20 to 25 minutes radius of the Church (in fact two families drive from Katy). Coming to a service at 9:01 required that they get up rather early on their only day off a week to get their families ready and drive to church. As a result, many of them miss church regularly. Their request was that we consider moving the service to 11:15 to allow for a bit more preparation time for these families before they leave for church. They believed our attendance would double in several months if we allowed the change. 

I asked for some time to consider their proposal because a change in the midst of a program year would be problematic. After discussing this further with Fr. Alvaro and the staff, I now realize that this move can be made rather easily. The following will be the new schedule for this service starting on Sunday, August 4th: 

10:15am Congregation begins to arrive at Price Fellowship Hall 
10:30am Adult Sunday School takes place in the Price Fellowship Hall 
10:30am Children’s Sunday School takes place in BEC 322 
11:10am Service party gets ready for procession 
11:15am Service Begins 
11:25am Children join the children from 11:15 English Service in Children’s chapel 
12:30am Fellowship 

Many will choose to come just to the church service, while others will choose to come early for Sunday school. This is the same format I have for my Bible Musings. The folks from the English 9:00 stay for class and join some from 11:15 who come early for the study.  

I know this change will require some adjustment by ushers, acolytes, technology team and others. I apologize for this, but we will have to write an application to the Diocese to renew this grant early in 2025. I need to give this service every opportunity to grow before writing this grant, which may not be granted otherwise. Please keep this service in our prayers and let me know what you think. 

May our Lord continue to bless you all,  

Fr. Roman+ 

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