The Story of Soma Queretaro
“How are we going to do this?” my friend asked after agreeing to join me in planting a church in Queretaro City, Mexico. It was clear that this was not a simple move from one city to another for him. In general, Mexicans are relationally rooted to places. We buy from the same taco shop our entire life and in some cases generations. Business owners become friends. There are invisible relational networks that spread throughout the city. Relationships are the soil in which we grow. Planting a church in a different city for a Mexican is more like moving an oak tree and less like repotting a plant.
“I don’t know bro, but let’s ask the One who does,” I answered. The Holy Spirit is on mission in Queretaro. The city is an oasis of safety and opportunity in Mexico. It’s a city of refuge and second chances. The native Queretanos feel like a minority among the influx of migrants from the rest of the republic. They are not the only minority. Like most cities in the Bajio region, evangelical Christians in the city are less than 10% of the population. By God’s grace, there are a small number of evangelical churches in the city. Counting by individual congregations seems like an impossible task to reach the city. Seeing them together as the Church of Jesus in the city brings hope. God has not forgotten Queretaro and His Church in the city is proof. It’s fertile soil for the gospel.
Mexicans find identity in community, not individualism. By God’s grace, Mexican culture is relational. There’s no distinction made between “nuclear” and “extended” family. Things get done, not through systems and programs, but through relational connections. If you want to find a good restaurant, you ask your trusted relational circle, not Google. This is the relational soil in which Mexicans are born and nurtured. It’s the soil that many lose when they move to Queretaro.
The gospel is the relational soil we need. Jesus saves us as individuals and places us into the Family of God. We grow in Christ in community and need each other to mature in Him. We speak the truths of Jesus to one another in community in everyday life. The good news of Jesus transforms our relational soil. It is through this gospel relational soil that we become who God called us to be. Queretaro needs this soil.
We planted Soma Queretaro convinced that the gospel places us into the Family of God (Eph. 2:19). Our relational roots are stronger and can produce more fruit when they grow through Christ (John 15:5). This has not been easy or fast. We invested about a year learning to be family through the gospel. We are learning to see Christ together in things like eating tacos or going to Costco. Each activity is an opportunity to transform the relational soil through the gospel.
It’s been two years since my friend asked that question. He and his wife are spreading their roots in Queretaro. They are growing and thriving in a church family rich with gospel relational soil. God has added more people to the church planting core group. Each one has grown and in turns helps others grow by speaking the gospel, each doing their part to transform the relational soil. I still don’t know what God has planned for Soma Queretaro, but I can see Him on mission in and through us.
Join us in praying for the gospel to advance in Queretaro.
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