PORTALES (BNM) – Sunday, March 21, more people showed up for baptism than a church had planned. During that Sunday’s worship service at Iglesia Bautista Cristo es la Puerta, Portales, Pastor Arturo Villa planned to baptize three people. Instead, five people were ready for baptism. The congregation is a church plant facilitated by the Tri-Area Baptist Association.
I.B. Cristo es la Puerta met at First Baptist Church, Portales, for the baptisms. They took place at the beginning of the worship service, after First Baptist’s pastor, Phillip Smith, welcomed them. Villa conducted the baptisms, while Ricardo Rivera, the Baptist Convention of New Mexico’s Hispanic strategist, translated his words into English.
After the baptisms, Rivera preached a message on the meaning and significance of baptism. He explained the Good News and invited unsaved individuals in the congregation to commit their life to Christ. In response, five individuals trusted Christ as their Savior. Afterward, the church family shared a fellowship meal.
As another part of the story, Iglesia Bautista Cristo es la Puerta had received a new van donated by Sandia Baptist Church, Clovis. The Spanish church used the new van to pick up people to attend the services that day. It plans for the van to help the congregation grow by assisting people to attend services.
Arturo Villa also serves as a chaplain with Foundations of Faith Ministries, Portales. He and other FOF chaplains help Spanish-speaking workers and their families build strong lives on the foundation of faith in Jesus Christ. The ministry sees salvation commitments regularly.
As a church plant, Iglesia Bautista Cristo es la Puerta’s partners and sponsoring churches include First Baptist Church, Portales; First Baptist Church, Dora; Floyd Baptist Church; Calvary Baptist Church, Portales; First Baptist Church, Conchas; Arch Baptist Church; Emmanuel Baptist Church, Farmington; and the Baptist Convention of New Mexico.