Five years ago, as of next month, Carlos Maciel was our translator when we met with Pastor Julian Maciel (no close relationship) of the Assemblea de Dios, Iglesia Centro Familiar in San Lucas. Later that year, we got to know him as Pastor Carlos, who was the pastor of the first church plant from Centro Familiar. Pastor Carlos invited us to visit his church plant, which was in a rented building at the time, for the evening service. A few days later, we had to fly home to Michigan, not knowing when we would be able to return.
In January of the next year, Pastor Carlos was standing on a humble piece of property in one of the barrios of Cabo San Lucas, crying out to the Lord that he had purchased the property he had felt directed to buy but had no tools and no knowledge of building. We had not had any communication from Pastor Carlos since we left Los Cabos in May of 2010, but in January of 2011, Richard felt he had to return to Cabo San Lucas with our covered trailer and tools to help the area pastors. Less than a week after Pastor Carlos stood on his new lot crying out to God, Richard drove up to his rented house/church building with the knowledge and tools to finish the small house on the new lot for a parsonage and start the humble beginnings of the church, Cristo es el Camino.
A year and a half ago, Pastor Carlos’ church started their first church plant at Cabo Valle, with Pastor Miguel serving as pastor. Then a plant was started at Las Palmas (also known as Lomas). This plant has had a setback due to the rent on the lot they were using being more than tripled. They’ve had to step back on this church plant, but Pastor Carlos shared just this week that the mother church now has a nucleus of believers living in that area, with the goal to restart the Las Palmas plant next year. The third church plant was started out of one of the church families' homes in Caribe. Caribe is still alive and well even after the hurricane. The fourth plant is just now in the works and will be starting within two weeks. I will be blogging on the newest church plant shortly.
All of this to say, the 5th Anniversary celebration was fabulous! Pastor Carlos had received permission from the city to close the street in front of the church and use the street as part of the celebration. Being that the celebration had been in the planning for months, no one would have expected the city to decide to finally dig up the entire length of the street and do some much needed water and sewer repair at the same time. Of course, this would have been great news if it hadn’t been for the upcoming anniversary celebration.
In true form, though, Pastor Carlos and his faithful men and women, made a walking bridge across the chasm down the middle of the dirt road and put up caution tape along the sides of the excavation. They were still able to set up the food tables in the street and were able to expand the seating outside the building, as well. They even removed the sheets of particle board that make up the front of the church and opened up the celebration to the whole neighborhood.
There were two different praise teams: the youth team, as well as the adults. There were also women and girls praise dance groups, a youth group skit, a Christian Mariachi solo, two very dramatic testimonies of what God had done in their lives, great preaching, and an altar call where even some of the guests came forward to invite Christ into their lives and homes—in addition to the fun, food, and fellowship.
Pastor Carolos honored Richard and I for being the catalyst that enabled them to have the parsonage, church structures, and the church plants they now have. Had we not shown up, the Lord may have had a plan B for Pastor Carlos and the newly purchased property four years ago, but He chose to use us—‘Us’ being far more than just Richard, our small team and myself. ‘Us’ includes everyone of you who prays for us, supports us financially or just tells others to check out our website and the work we are doing here in Los Cabos. A huge thank-you to everyone that helped make this 5th Anniversary Celebration possible!