JOSHUA—Trailer parks exist on the periphery of some people’s lives—transient communities on the edge of town, occupied by residents they may see as living on the edge of society. But they are central to the ministry of one North Texas Baptist church planter.
Edgar Trinidad focuses on trailer parks and people who live in them who need to hear the gospel.
As an 11-year-old in Puerto Rico, Trinidad felt God’s calling to ministry. When he grew up, he moved to the United States mainland—first to work with the New England Baptist Convention and later to study at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth.
About 20 miles away in Joshua, he discovered the need for churches in trailer parks.
The sister of an individual he was training as a Christian disciple introduced Trinidad to a park administrator.
The owner told Trinidad he wanted a church started at each of his 18 parks.
“I went to a meeting with her, and she asked if I could start a Bible study here at the park,” Trinidad said.
The residents responded positively to the Bible study, and the owner of the trailer park traveled from Colorado to meet with him. The owner told Trinidad he wanted a church started at each of his 18 parks, and he was willing to lend his facilities and provide some money and effort to make this goal a reality.
Trinidad partners with the Baptist General Convention of Texas in church planting, and Texas Baptists help support his ministry through their gifts to the Mary Hill Davis Offering for Texas Missions.
“The most difficult thing is time,” he said, noting many residents work more than one job. “When you try to reach these people, it is very difficult to find them. That demands a lot of energy.”
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Trinidad started with six people attending the Bible study in the first park. In less than two months, attendance grew to 54 people.
“This is not just about the trailer park; it’s about the community. It’s people we meet at every level,” he said.
Trinidad hopes to expand into the other 17 parks with the help of the owner and through God’s providence.
“We need to reach America, and the healthiest way is to start healthy churches,” he said. “Please pray for us and that the Lord can send people to the field.”
The church was created to meet people’s needs by bringing them to faith in Christ, Trinidad believes. And he has set out to fulfill that, one trailer park at a time.