Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Hispanic Christian Academy

It’s not about a certificate; it’s about a posture of transformation. Sit through a Hispanic/Latino worship time, and you’ll know what I mean.

Although “sit” is probably not the right word to use.

I was blessed and privileged to travel to Lubbock, TX, July 31-August 1 to meet with individuals from the Northwest Texas United Methodist Annual Conference. They welcomed my coworker and me to train both instructors as well as new and returning students to the Hispanic Christian Academy.

Let me explain what this is. The Hispanic Christian Academy is an online training program for laypersons to be part of a pastoral ministry team. Yes, it’s all online. That’s the beauty of it. Students join our program, ideally as part of a team of students from a specific region, and receive essential training in Bible, theology and practical ministry. Students can complete the 12 courses in 3 years. They work hard to receive their Certificates of Completion, but the Certificate doesn’t fully reflect the sacrifices they have made or the regular impact their learning has made in their ministries.

Northwest Texas Conference Hispanic/Latino Ministry

Most of our HCA students are already fully engaged in ministry in some capacity. They have families, full-time jobs and their church ministries. And yet they also carve out time to receive this training. They have experienced God’s transformation and have seen God at work in their families and communities. They are completely committed and devoted to God and God’s Kingdom work.

Maybe that is why they worship standing and not sitting; God has impacted their lives. Maybe that is why I was welcomed to jump in and join in their passionate and authentic worship--because we are doing Kingdom work together. Maybe they are compelled to rise to their feet in worship.

This group’s commitment to God has brought them to the HCA in order to deepen their understanding of Scripture and ministry. The HCA is not just an educational program. We hope it is a transformational journey.

How is God leading you to take your next step towards transformation? What has God done in your life that leads you to stand in worship?

To find out more about the Hispanic Christian Academy contact Erin Gildner at ergildner@united.edu or visit our website.

Erin Gildner
Coordinator of the Center for Hispanic/Latino Ministry

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