Mexico: Purepecha Story, Part 2
Alberto and Julia grew in the Lord and started attending an evangelical church in their small town in West Virginia. The leukemia treatment for their daughter was not having much effect and, unfortunately, Abigail died at the tender age of 18.
Alberto’s father demanded that the family bring her body back to their small community in Mexico so that she could be buried in her homeland. The family acceded to the wishes of the grandfather and patriarch of their clan. As the family returned to the little town of Quinceo, the spiritual darkness of this indigenous community was so strong and almost overwhelming for the family. As they held a service for Abigail, Alberto and Julia wanted to make it a celebration of not only her life but of the new life the whole family had experienced. The service reflected their faith in a living Savior, Jesus Christ.
Their immediate family did not know how to handle this “new” Alberto and Julia and began calling them “hallelujahs”—a common derogatory term for evangelical Christians in Mexico. Alberto and Julia could feel the oppressing darkness of their community; it was in stark contrast to the freedom and light they had experienced through their new life in Jesus. As they say in their own words, “We didn’t have any theological training, but we had life training through our church in West Virginia, Bible studies, our personal experiences as believers, and our fellowship with other believers. There was darkness all around us. We HAD to share with our family this new life we had experienced, this freedom, and our certainty that we would see our daughter again in heaven! Our family didn’t know anything about Jesus!”
After the funeral, Alberto talked with Julia and said these words: “How can we return back to our comfortable life in West Virginia when there are so many people dying every day in darkness and wrong beliefs, going to hell, being lost forever?”
Julia wasn’t so convinced at first. She liked her life in the United States. She had a beautiful home that they had built little-by-little. Their two boys were deeply involved in church, school, and sports in West Virginia. But the intense darkness that enveloped their family in Mexico began to work on her heart, and Julia knew that she had to obey and stay in Quinceo. Julia would once again begin a new life and become a witness to her community of the amazing power of Jesus and all that He does for His children.
Alberto and Julia received land as part of the indigenous community and were also able to buy some land in town where they built a home for their family. Using the back patio, they began to build an area that they would open to the town. Alberto and Julia started holding church services every Friday evening and Sunday afternoon. Alberto began to preach, sharing from the Bible and from his life testimonies of what Jesus had done for him and what Jesus wanted to do for others in this community.
In December of 2020, the Circle of Hope made its first trip to the town of Quinceo in the state of Michoacan, four hours south of Guadalajara, as part of an integrated church-planting strategy to reach and train the Purepecha, an indigenous people group. The goal is to plant a new church, Breath of Life, in the nearby town of Paracho and establish the community development ministry of Circle of Hope. Once a suitable office is found in Paracho, the church and Circle of Hope will begin to offer Bible studies, spiritual counselling, legal aid, and job skills training for home micro-businesses.
Alliance Women is committed to prayer and financial support for the Circle of Hope ministry in Mexico. We have set a goal to raise $16,600 for this vital ministry to women. To participate, please visit www.alliancewomen.org/give.