There is a Hispanic church planting movement underway in Virginia and DC, and God has provided leaders with vision and passion. Fernando Mangieri and Raúl Santamaría are two catalytic church planters whose role is to develop and send out leaders to plant churches.
Just as Scripture teaches us to do, these men
- Lead with vision based on obedience to the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18–20)
- Reach the lost and make disciples (John 15:5,7)
- Disciple multiplying leaders (2 Timothy 2:2)—teaching leaders who will faithfully multiply sound biblical teaching to other leaders
- Send out leaders after prayer and fasting (Acts 13:1–3)
Romans 16 provides a list of discipled leaders who were part of Paul’s church planting ministry. There is a similar pattern in the growing network of churches through these leaders’ ministries.
Fernando Mangieri planted Iglesia Bautista Nueva Esperanza (North Chesterfield) in 2009 and established a training center at Kingsland Baptist Church. Since that time, the following new churches and leaders have been developed:
- Ronaldo Muñoz was discipled and became the pastor at Nueva Esperanza in North Chesterfield
- Muñoz, Mangieri, and disciple Paco Valencia planted Iglesia Bautista Nueva Esperanza in Petersburg
- Paco Valencia became the pastor of Iglesia Bautista Nueva Esperanza (Petersburg)
- Mangieri then planted Iglesia Bautista Conexión in Richmond (now meeting in Moseley) and is now developing the following:
- Iglesia Bautista Amelia
- Discipling Oscar Sosa to lead CESI-Antioquía in Chesterfield
- Discipling Odilon Mendoza to plant a church for Mixtecos (an unreached people group) in Richmond
Raúl Santamaría planted Iglesia Bíblica Bautista Emanuel (Ashburn) in 2010 and established a training center in Chantilly. Since then, the following new churches and leaders have been developed:
- José Mazariego was discipled and sent to start a church in Woodbridge. He is now planting a second church in Dumfries.
- José Osorio was discipled and sent to start a church in Strasburg. He is now planting a second church in Stephens City.
- Joao Rocha was trained and is starting a church in Silver Spring, MD.
- Caleb Godoy is planting a church in Germantown, MD and is planning to plant a second church in 2018 in Falls Church.
- Yecferson Hernandez has been discipled as an apprentice and is preparing to plant a church in 2018 in Sterling.
- Santamaría is assisting with the development of a church in Vienna.
In addition to the church planting activities above, Mangieri and Santamaría have great influence in the Hispanic community. Ministries and other churches look to them for guidance and direction. They also provide training for leaders who are not even a part of their network of churches. They do this because their ministry is not about them—it’s about the Great Commission. To God be the glory!
Starting new churches should be a fundamental part of the local church if we love the Lord and obey His Word. By starting new churches, we are all blessed—the non-believers, the city, the local church, the leaders, the denomination…and the Kingdom grows. The joy that is in my heart is indescribable—to see lives being transformed and equipped, ready to share their faith. It is a matter of giving, of allowing the disciples to grow, preach, evangelize, disciple, make mistakes, learn, and experience serving God in planting new churches.
– Fernando Mangieri
[It has been a] blessing and joy seeing what God has done in my brothers: their conversion and baptism, then discipling them and equipping them to proclaim the praises of the One who called us out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9). From the beginning, I have seen the future planter or apprentice as…a potential new servant for the glory of God. In my experience, the essential thing to starting a church is to have a clear call from God and clearly understand what the Gospel is in the life of the planter. [Churches are planted by] disciples trained in local churches with biblical and intentional leadership. These leaders seek the lost and make disciples. …Soli Deo gloria!
– Raúl Santamaría
We need to reach more people for Christ, and we are not only talking about evangelizing, but that we must disciple, teach, and teach our communities the biblical truths, which are of great importance so that people are not deceived.
– Caleb Godoy
We have the assurance that the work is of the Lord and that He is the only one who can help us grow in numbers and in spirit. We have our confidence and faith fully placed in Him.
– Paco Valencia