The Convención Bautista Hispana de Texas (Hispanic Baptist Convention of Texas) met on June 26-28 at Trinity Baptist Church in San Antonio. During the three-day event, messengers elected new officers, approved the 2023 budget and conducted other business. The event saw 816 attendees, including 150 messengers.
During a historic election, three women were elected to officer roles.
Sergio Ramos, church engagement officer at Buckner International and member of La Promesa in Dallas, was elected president; Sylvia Ake, from Primera Iglesia Bautista in Edinburg, was elected first vice president; Lili Martinez Lara, from Iglesia Bautista Emmanuel in McAllen, was elected second vice president; and Claudia Treviño, from Iglesia Bautista El Calvario in San Antonio, was elected secretary.
Incumbent President Tony Miranda presented the “President’s Challenge” in which he challenged the Church to seek and submit to God. He encouraged attendees to closely evaluate their top priorities, their purpose, their mission and to create a plan of action.
“Don’t be afraid to do what God has called you to do! It’s time to revitalize,” Miranda said.
Raquel Contreras, general director of Editorial Mundo Hispano, presented Miranda’s new book “Las Parábolas de Jesús en su Contexto,” during the meeting.
Rev. Tomás Mackey, president of Baptist World Alliance, echoed Miranda’s charge. He reminded the audience that God is at work. All areas of life are missional work, he said. Attendees were challenged to be disciples in every part of their lives, including at school or work, around the neighborhood and when they are with family members.
A budget of $407,928.91 was approved. This is an increase of $12,105.63 from the previous year’s budget.
During the opening session, a special time of prayer for Uvalde was led by Carlos Contreras, pastor of Primera Iglesia Bautista in Uvalde; Neftali Barboza, pastor of Iglesia Nueva Jerico in Uvalde; and Julian Moreno, pastor emeritus of Primera Iglesia Bautista in Uvalde. Moreno is also the grandfather of Lexi Rubio, one of the 19 children killed on May 24 during a mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde.
Barboza and Contreras shared about the hurts the community faced but also expressed thanks that their brothers and sisters in Christ rallied around Uvalde with prayers and aid.
“God’s faithfulness… has shown up through those He surrounds us with,” Barboza said. “There are no words to express gratitude to Him.”
Moreno shared his initial pain and anger towards the perpetrator, but he remembered Jesus’ teachings on loving those who persecute you. He shared that the events have given him a deeper understanding of the book of Job and said that now his top ministry is helping his other grandchildren process what has happened.
Pastors gathered around Barboza, Contreras and Moreno to pray for them.
Special prayers for those affected by the crisis in Ukraine and the families of the 51 immigrants who passed away in a tractor-trailer in San Antonio on June 27 were also led during later sessions.
(Photo courtesy of Ethan Rincones)