A story about Reaching our Neighbors by Terri Carnes
Published in The First Edition, July 2015 Issue
Who are our neighbors? This topic has been addressed by our church staff through various efforts of transformative missions ministry in the past year. We have been building trust-based relationships with our neighbors!
One suggestion for reaching out to our neighbors whose primary language is Spanish was to offer a Conversational Spanish class. The purpose of a class such as this would be to help the volunteers working with ESL classes, the mentors working with Williams Elementary students, the church members beginning a mission at Quail Valley, and any others interested in learning Spanish. The focus of this class would be on presenting practical vocabulary and useful communicative phrases that would be helpful to those who participate in these ministries.
For six weeks, twenty eager adults attended the Conversational Spanish class on Wednesday evenings. They have had fun learning a new language and culture as well as practicing speaking the language in a non-threatening environment. These are some of their reasons for participating:
Our country currently has many Spanish-speaking people and that number will only grow in the future. I would like to communicate with them in some small way.
… this class helps me remember some words I had forgotten.
I have considered working with students at Williams.
I teach ESL K-5th graders. This is helping me understand and communicate with both students and their parents.
… I have always meant to learn Spanish.
… I wanted to refresh what little Spanish I learned in high school…
Me gusta el español.
We anticipate that we will offer this class again, and we hope you will be willing to join us. We look forward to seeing you there! This is one way in which we can become even more effective as we share what God has given us in life. As we grow in our relationship with God, it’s natural to share our gifts and passions with others and this is a wonderful opportunity to improve how we communicate with others in those experiences.
For more information about future classes, please contact Ron Swain, Director of Transformative Mission Ministries.