Caldwell reaches out to Latino community
by Mario and Claudia Ruiz Captains –
During our time at the Caldwell, Idaho Corps, God has called us to win our community, including our Latino population, for his kingdom.
Recently a bilingual couple joined our team. Aurelio Ambriz is director of Latino ministries and his wife, Ligia, is the youth ministry director. They have the experience and enthusiasm to realize the vision that God has given us.
Our worship services and adult Sunday school classes are now bilingual; our plan is to eventually hold two services, one in English and one in Spanish. For our Spanish speakers, we offer a home worship service, which meets every Saturday in a different member’s home. We also offer discipleship classes to train new Christians and we have just started a couples’ ministry. Couples will work in the community, dealing not only with marriage-related issues but also presenting the gospel.
We design meetings to reach women and men in both the Hispanic and the English community. Our new bilingual Women’s Café has two objectives: first, to present Christ as savior in a social setting, where the women visit before possibly attending church; second, to initiate discussions on issues that interest women, including relationships with children, husband, friends, etc. We serve coffee and desserts to encourage fellowship. A special mother-daughter brunch is planned for May in honor of Mothers’ Day.
Also in the works are breakfast and luncheon meetings for men, where discussions center on helping men in their family and work relationships.
Finally, our Latino ministry visits Hispanic families in the community to let them know that The Salvation Army is there to serve them and to offer its ministries.
Our youth ministry includes Sunday school classes divided by age and children’s music. Our new after school program just began at the beginning of March. We will hold workshops for our youth leaders—many people wish to work with children but do not have appropriate training. Topics will include: How to lead a child to Christ, How to teach a children’s class, Dynamics in discipline, The teacher’s calling, and Bringing Bible stories to life.
We have faith that God, in his infinite grace, has heard our prayers and that his kingdom is growing in Caldwell.