Service In The Cerro Grande Vistas Community, Mexico
The following is an interview conducted by the youth of Mexico with Saulo Medina, the Pastor of the Great Victory Church in the Cerro Grande Vistas Community:
Could you share some of your story with us? How did you begin all this?
When we arrived here, there was more need than there is now. There was no infrastructure. At that time there was no church here. It was founded 10 years ago. We started with nothing, but were able to start building due to the help we received from the United States. They could see the work we were doing here. We came here because the people needed us, God brought us here to help these people. In the beginning we received help from a Government Agency for building materials. Later we started serving food in the dining hall for three or four years. During that time we were aided by the State Government Agency that works with children. This support ended last year when they insisted we serve food every day. This was beyond our means. We were closed down for two months, until you people arrived.
So far we have been happy with the work done together with you. I always say that together we can do many things. Here in the dining hall, our people help you to serve the people. We have a group of volunteers, sisters from the church, who clean as well as help out in feeding the people. We cannot pay them but try to help them out occasionally with pantry or invite them to a dinner.
What problems have you had here as a pastor?
Part of our problem is that we function as a church. A powerful foundation here will not give us aid because of that. We do not mix religion with the help we offer people. We have our meetings and invite people. Some come and we pray for the others, but we do not confuse the help with who we are.
We work with mestizos (mixed race), as well as rarámuris (indigenous people). Right now we are focusing more on the rarámuris, who are very different from us because they live from day to day. Their mentality is not to have anything forever. Some of them work two or three months and then take two weeks off. They say: “I have made some money, I will save it to be able to eat these days”. If you notice, there are a lot of very young mothers with small children. We go visit them in their homes. They have no bed, no floor, but are happy just to have a roof over their head. They do not look for more. They live for the day because that is part of their culture. When they come here it may be the only meal they have that day. That is why it is a beautiful thing to help them.
What do you think about the service we offer here?
We are grateful because we cannot do this ourselves. The bible says: “he who helps the poor is helping Jehová”. We do not know, nor do you, what we do for them; and we do not know how we are helping God. So, I congratulate you, not only for the work you do but also for everything behind it all. Thanks so much to everyone who helps out in some way. You work very hard each week to come and give from the heart. Working together we are serving and helping people. God has blessed us very much. He has helped us and we are grateful to Him, as well as to you; because together we can serve the people who need it!
Saulo Medina, Pastor.
Sisters from the Church