Hispanic community can drive the U.S. Christian movement forward
The Hispanic community has the potential to drive the Christian movement forward in the U.S.
Recent findings from the Census Bureau showed that the U.S. Hispanic population is the fastest growing ethnic group in the U.S. today, and now exceeds 50 million. In the last decade the growth rate of Hispanics rose by 43 percent, from just 35.3 million in 2000, PR Newswire reported.
Hispanics now comprise the largest minority segment in the U.S. at over 16 percent of total population. One out of six U.S. Americans is now Hispanic, and among U.S. children, it is one in four, according to PR Newswire.
What’s more, PR Newswire noted that more than half of the population growth in the country this past decade was from Hispanics, increasing by 15.2 million, compared to the total overall 27.3 million total population growth, PR Newswire said.
Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of The National Hispanic Christian leadership Conference, told PR Newswire, “The Hispanic faith community is rising up. We are on the precipice of a multiethnic-multigenerational movement, an awakening. The Hispanic community is the firewall of righteousness.”
The NHCLC is the largest Christian Hispanic organization in the U.S., also called the Hispanic National Association of Evangelicals. It represents some 30,454 born again, Evangelical churches with 16 million members, PR Newswire said.
Included among their member churches are The Foursquare Church, Church of God, Assemblies of God, and National Association of Evangelicals, among others. The NHCLC has partnerships with Liberty University, Oral Roberts University, and Promise Keepers among others, according to its website.
Rev. Jim Tolle of The Church on the Way in Los Angeles, CA told PR Newswire, “The exploding Hispanic presence in the United States should be viewed as one of the greatest opportunities God has given for the increase and health of his Son’s Church in this country.”
Rev. Mauricio Elizondo, Sr. Pastor, Walnut Park Assembly of God in Texas told PR Newswire, “The message of the Hispanic community is about becoming ‘one’ and crying out, bringing America back to its core values that this great country was founded on. We are going to be the reconciling voices for the people who have been impoverished, the voices for the unborn, and the voices for people who have been marginalized.”
Elizondo told PR Newswire, “It is our time to rise up and shine–50 million voices shouting together for the sake of our Lord, for the sake of our Lord, for the sake of Humanity and for the sake of America, bringing country back to revival.”
Through sheer numbers the Hispanics carry special voting strength that is good for the next 10 years, PR Newswire said. The largest number of Hispanics is in Florida, New York, Texas and California, and they account for 143 electoral votes—more than half of what is required to be elected president.
Rodriguez told PR Newswire, “It is a community that can no longer be ignored. The Hispanic community will rise up and shout for righteousness and justice.” Ruben Navarrette Jr., CNN Contributor said, “The United States is becoming a Hispanic country. And it’s happening much faster than anyone expected…than demographers had estimated.”
On the downside, Christian Today noted that the Hispanic segment is largely undereducated. In response, NHCLC launched the Alliance for Hispanic Christian Education which has formed links with several learning institutions including Oral Roberts University for a minimum 25 percent Hispanic student enrolment, the website said.
AHCE has also partnered with Regent University for graduate school education, and Liberty University for online services, the website reported.
Another problem Hispanics face is immigration reform, with 12 million undocumented Hispanic residents in the U.S. for whom Rodriguez is lobbying for integration, Christian Today said.
Rodriguez said that his proposal, A Just Integration Solution, “reconciles Romans 13, adherence to the rule of law, with Leviticus 19, treating the stranger amongst us as one of our own,” according to Christian Today.
Rodriguez’ proposal has been presented to some members of Congress. He told Christian Today, “We are currently negotiating with Congress to push an immigration reform of integration to incorporate the 12 million people in a very suitable way for our country.”