Leaders and members of the Tacubaya Seventh-day Adventist Church in Mexico City, Mexico, recently celebrated the 120th anniversary of the establishment of the church there. The celebration brought former and current leaders and members to reminisce on God’s blessings and the growth of the Adventist message throughout the nation.
The church in Tacubaya was the first Seventh-day Adventist church established in Mexico. It was in 1891 that an Italian missionary arrived in Mexico City to distribute 2,500 copies of The Great Controversy, a book written by Ellen G. White, a co-founder of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Later, George Washington Cavines, together with other missionaries in 1899, established the first Adventist church located in the Escandon Suburb, as reported in the book 100 Años del Adventismo en Mexico, or 100 years of Adventism in Mexico, authored by Adventist Pastor Velino Salazar.
Today, there are 254 churches and more than 88,000 church members in Mexico City and its metropolitan region.The church in Mexico currently has five major church regions that operate more than 4,691 churches with more than 781,000 members.
“From the very first church established, the publishing house, the first school that later changed its headquarters in Montemorelos, Nuevo Leon, and later the Sanatorium, we have seen the great advancement of the work in Mexico,” said David Javier, president of Adventist-operated GEMA Editors and member of the Tacubaya Church.
The celebration program featured testimonies of from former pastors and members of the Tacubaya church.“I remember clearly the old church building,” said Noe Luna, an elderly member. In 1960, the church was rebuilt to seat 400 people, replacing the much smaller original structure. “I was a boy when they decided that the church should be bigger and they took everything down and built a new place with more capacity,” he said.
Pastor Angel Ramírez, who pastored the Tacubaya Adventist Church in the 1970s, remembered when 100 new members were baptized in one day. He also talked about when new pews were installed and the construction of the Adventist-run sanatorium next door to the church. “It’s been 48 years since I pastored this church,” said Ramírez. “We grew as a church and we supported the Ignacio Altamirano Adventist school, as well as the sanatorium.”
The program also featured many videos messages from former pastors and leaders of the church, who encouraged the current members to continue in the faith and bring others to the feet of Jesus.Pastor Abner De Los Santos, who serves as vice president of the Adventist world church and who was a former member of the Tacubaya, church sent in greetings and motivated members to continue reaching out to those in the community.
Pastor César Hernández, president of the Azteca Conference overseeing parts of Mexico City, congratulated former and current members for their hard work in being instrumental in expanding the work of the church in Mexico. Hernández motivated the congregants to remain strong and faithful, sharing the hope of the gospel wherever they go.
A commemorative plaque was unveiled on the entrance of the Tacubaya Adventist Church during the special ceremony.