CORPUS CHRISTI—When the Hispanic Baptist Convention of Texas elected Tony Miranda as president in June, they followed the adage, “If you want something done, ask a busy person to do it.”
Miranda, a husband and father of two daughters, is campus pastor at Stark College and Seminary in Corpus Christi, where he also directs the school’s graduate program and is a lecturer in Christian Scriptures. He also serves as a teaching pastor at Primera Iglesia Bautista de Robstown.
Miranda grew up in a Baptist family in Mexico in the state of Durango, and has lived in the United States 10 years. He learned early the importance of availing himself of opportunities, and he hopes Hispanic congregations likewise will seize opportunities to become all God intends for them to be.
At his home church in Mexico, Iglesia Bautista Bethel in Gomez Palacio, members and church leaders recognized his gifts and opened the space for him to join its ministries through music, teaching and preaching.
In Mexico, he received two undergraduate degrees in graphic design and marketing, as well as a Master of Business Administration degree from Universidad Autónoma de la Laguna.
After arriving in the United States, he earned an undergraduate degree in Bible and theological studies from Baptist University of the Américas. He went on to earn Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry degrees from Baylor University’s Truett Theological Seminary.
Now he is pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy degree in New Testament from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
He also is writing his first book on the study and interpretation of the parables of Christ, which will be published in both English and Spanish.
While volunteering and living at a kibbutz in Israel, Miranda also received a certificate of Jewish culture and context from the Israel Study Center.
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Engage Hispanic Millennials
His professional experience and academic preparation have equipped Miranda for his ministry roles in Corpus Christi, Robstown and with Convención.
Inspired by the support he finds in his wife Daleth and the mentorship of his professors at BUA like David Maltsberger, Nora Lozano and Mario Ramos, Miranda hopes he will provide ministers, churches and Hispanic Millennials the support they need to grow in Christ.
“Churches have a generational divide of language and culture,” he explained. “While the Hispanic church in Texas is multigenerational and multilingual, it is still one church. So, we want to see how the local church can address the needs of different groups and not have them be independent of each other.”
Young people must become active in church, but older generations must also allow younger generations to become active, he noted.
Miranda hopes generational, cultural and language challenges instead will become opportunities for Hispanic congregations. In the process, he hopes ministers will realize people need opportunities to grow.
“There are many young adults with many talents, young educated adults, but who are not connected in a church,” Miranda said. “We need to motivate them more. And our hope is that as some of them get started, we will then see a chain reaction with more and more following.”
With that goal in mind, Miranda worked with Convención’s Young Latino Leaders in a statewide initiative focusing on projects developed by young Hispanics in local congregations while also engaging in leadership roles.
Enhance connections between pastors
Convención not only focuses on the next generations, but also on current pastors, he added.
With Conexión, the Hispanic Convention offers pastors the opportunity to connect with each other and to partner to meet the challenges they face, he noted.
Miranda also understands the challenges pastors deal with every day. For that reason, he has started personally checking on pastors—calling them and hearing what they and their congregations go through.
“Many pastors feel alone. So, I want to show them we care about them and want to be there for them,” he said. “In my role as president, I have connected with some pastors. And after listening to them, I pray with them for their needs and their congregations,”
With all of his responsibilities in his family, jobs, studies and ministry, Miranda said he find strength in the God in whom he trusts and in a supportive family.
“It is by the faithfulness of God that I am on this journey,” he said, adding, “I could not have done anything without the support of my wife and daughters.”
He particularly finds inspiration in the way God is using his wife Daleth, who also
graduated from BUA, as a conference speaker for Baptist events and ministries.
Together, the couple and their daughters, Zoe and Noa, pursue shared interests including reading and photography, as well as recording and producing Christian music.