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  • Writer's pictureCarolina Conference


Pastors Jonathan Mairena and Marcos Bernal

photos by: Henrique Gomes

A testament to the power of faith and community, the congregations of two districts comprising eight churches rallied together, uniting 750 people in a common mission—to share the boundless love of Jesus within their community. The remarkable initiative, which would see the fusion of districts and hearts, was sparked by the visionary Jonathan Mairena.

It all began when Pastor Jonathan Mairena, inspired by a divine calling, reached out to Pastor Marcos Bernal with a proposal: “Let’s do this together.” Their shared commitment to evangelism set the wheels in motion, with a resolute belief that their mission was of utmost importance. The idea not only aligned the eight churches but also effectively harnessed each congregation’s unique strengths while addressing their collective weaknesses.

As they embarked on this spiritual journey, Mairena and Bernal became an inseparable team, driving the mission forward with unwavering determination. They delegated responsibilities beyond the norm for a typical evangelistic series, nurturing a sense of camaraderie among the participating churches.

The endeavor spanned over nine months, characterized by meetings, planning sessions, and introspective discussions about the district’s needs. Kathy Hernandez and Roger Hernandez, Evangelism leaders from the Southern Union, led the way, orchestrating an action plan that included specialized training for church members. The team meticulously mapped out which churches would host each monthly event, adapting as necessary along the way.

In the initial stages, some churches hesitated to fully engage, but as time progressed, a wave of enthusiasm swept across the entire community. Congregants of all ages, from the elderly to the youth, eagerly lent their support. The impact was profound, particularly among the younger generations.

The evangelistic campaign ignited a newfound sense of proactivity and intentionality among the youth and young adults. Parents willingly stepped aside from leadership roles, allowing their children to take the reins, a sign of the initiative’s transformative effect.

Reflecting on the experience, Mairena encouraged both pastors and congregation members to embrace similar programs and evangelistic initiatives. He emphasized the strength that can be derived from unity, stressing that together, they were not merely disparate entities but a cohesive group working harmoniously.

This inspiring initiative serves as a reminder that when God’s people unite for a common purpose, extraordinary things happen.

Note: Pastor Jonathan Mairena’s district was Albertson, Ayden/Greenville NC, Dudley, Mount Olive Spanish churches. Pastor Marcos Bernal’s district was Jacksonville, Morehead, Myrtle Beach, New Bern and Wilmington Spanish churches.

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