“We need to seek partnerships that could help us be the Gospel in a concrete way, to embody God’s creative hope. We are called to do justice, advocate, and be co-creators of new life-giving opportunities for our communities on the margins,” says Rev. Héctor J. Hernández of Iglesia Nueva Creación (New Creation Church) in Indianapolis.
Joining with community leaders, professionals, and non-profit organizations, Hernández has organized events designed to meet the needs of undocumented immigrants in the areas of health and mental care, safety, family life, legal counseling, and the arts (see below).
For example, Iglesia Nueva Creación will be hosting two events in April – one regarding undocumented immigrant’s rights and the other for domestic violence. The information for immigrants will be incorporated into the worship service of April 10 at 1:30 pm. The Law Firm of Fatima Johnson and the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office and the Latino Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence , will partner to educate church members and surrounding communities on their rights, and on where and how to get help on Saturday, April 23 at 3:00pm.
Hernández said, “We have many challenges as a church of mainly Hispanic immigrants. We live in a system that works against many of us with limited access to services and opportunities. The recent increase on Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids have resulted in deportations and broken families. We cannot afford to sit comfortably in our pews any longer. The lives and well-being of individuals and families in minority communities are our responsibility. What is your church doing to make a difference in your communities today?”
Hernández and Iglesia Nueva Creación hope to inspire churches to partner with other churches that are trying to make a difference but may not have the resources to effectively do so. They invite non-Hispanic people to learn and partner with them to make a difference.
Also at Iglesia Nueva Creación –
The Art Lab has been a successful program for children between the ages 7 – 16, and is finalizing its first year providing a creative space for participants to learn and explore art, design and photography. The Art Lab is also a safe space where kids can reflect and process the many issues affecting their families and communities. Héctor’s degrees in graphic design and counseling have proven helpful in this endeavor. One hundred and fifty Christmas cards were made using the original art of the students and sent to the children still waiting in detention centers in Texas this past December.