Pastor: Daniel Bongarra
Location: Burnaby, B.C.
What’s your church mission statement?
We are followers of Jesus Christ, empowered by the Holy Spirit, and guided by God’s Word to minister together. We are committed to honouring God through worship, personal lifestyle, caring for one another, equipping one another for ministry, and communicating God’s love to the world.
What makes your church unique?
We work to reach the Hispanic community. I don’t believe in traditional church structures – our services are very warm and engaging for new people. I preach practical, contemporary sermons. Everyone in the church is part of the family. We have a radio program for the Latino community that even Catholics and non-religious people listen to (Buenos Dias Vancouver on 96.1 FM – Mon., Wed., Fri. 7–8 am). It has news, music, interviews, brief sermons, and incoming calls. That means I’m not just working for one church.
What was a defining moment for your congregation?
Our church came from a very conservative model. In July 2006, I encouraged members to get out and serve in different areas, and since then, things have been very different.
If you could choose a famous Christian to come and speak, who would it be?
Tony Campolo, Brian McLaren, or John Stott.
What would your neighbours miss about you if you left your community today?
Since our members come from all different neighbourhoods and Latino communities around Burnaby, that’s hard to say. Only about 10 percent come from this specific area. www.esperanzachurch.org