Hispanic Baptist Convention emphasizes importance of education

Newly elected officers of the Hispanic Baptist Convention of Texas are (left to right) Secretary Carmen Gaytan, Second Vice President Rueben Burguete, First Vice President Vince Gonzales and President Rolando Aguirre.

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DALLAS—Messengers to the Hispanic Baptist Convention of Texas annual meeting elected officers, approved a budget of more than $100,000 and emphasized the importance of educating the rising generation.

Taking care of business

Officers elected at the meeting, held June 26-28 at Park Cities Baptist Church in Dallas, are President Rolando Aguirre, pastor of the Spanish-language congregation of Calvary Baptist Church in McAllen; First Vice President Vince Gonzales, pastor of North Dallas Family Church in Carrollton; Second Vice President Rueben Burguete, pastor of the Hispanic mission of First Baptist Church in Caldwell; and Secretary Carmen Gaytan from Calvary Baptist Church in McAllen.

The approved budget primarily provides assistance to churches and regional Hispanic fellowships. It also includes funding for a staff internship position, for a long-range planning project within Texas Baptists’ office of Hispanic ministries and for annual meeting expenses.

Messengers also learned about a matching grant of up to $100,000 for contributions earmarked for the Hispanic Baptist Convention of Texas through the end of the year.

‘Onward Christian Soldiers’

In the annual sermon, Alfonso Flores, pastor of Primera Iglesia Bautista Mexicana in San Antonio, echoed the lyrics of the hymn, “Onward Christian Soldiers,” challenging Hispanic Texas Baptists to march onward with Christ before them.

“If we are advancing together toward the goal, what is that goal? Our goal is being transformed into the image of Christ,” Flores said. “Has anyone ever confused you with Jesus?”

Executive Director Jesse Rincones spoke on “Advancing Together with More,” based on Matthew 25:14-30.

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Rincones emphasized:

  • “We have more than what we deserve.”
  • “We will not receive more than what our ability permits.”
  • “We can have more if we are faithful with what we have.”
  • “Being wicked and lazy keeps us from having more.”
  • “God is ready to give more to those who are faithful.”

Emphasis on education

During the annual meeting, East Texas Baptist University awarded four scholarships to Hispanic students, totaling $160,000—Josue Morales of Marshall, Esteban Chairez of Murchison, Cleopatra Olivarez of Glenn Heights and Mirtha Mendoza of Jacksonville.

DBU Rincones Barbosa 250Dallas Baptist University presented scholarships to Jonathan Rincones (left) and Abisai Barbosa.Dallas Baptist University awarded two scholarships, to Jonathan Rincones and Abisai Barbosa, totaling $100,000.

DBU also presented the Gary Cook Servant Leadership Award to Micaela Camacho of Fort Worth in memory of her husband, Rudy Camacho, and to Beatrice Mesquias of Harlingen, immediate past president of the Hispanic Baptist Convention.

The Hispanic Education Initiative and the Hispanic Baptist Convention of Texas awarded 20 $1,000 scholarships to Hispanic college students from around the state.

Also at the convention’s annual meeting, four churches were recognized for their missions giving to Texas Baptists’ Cooperative Program unified budget—Northside Community Church in San Antonio, Stonegate Baptist Church in Alice, Iglesia Bautista Getsemani in Fort Worth and Iglesia Bautista Vida Nueva in Katy.

Based on reporting by Kalie Lowrie of Texas Baptists’ Communications.

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