SACRAMENTO, Calif.,–The National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (www.nhclc.org), also known as The Hispanic National Association of Evangelicals, the nation’s largest Christian Hispanic organization, held their annual Board Convention in San Antonio, Texas April 11-13, 2011. The NHCLC Board Convention brought together prestigious pastors from America’s largest Hispanic Evangelical congregations and leaders of the most predominant denominations across the country. It culminated in a historical event with more than 2,000 people in attendance as Dr. Bernice King, daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., spoke about righteousness and justice.
Bernice A. King (Be A King) delivered a powerful message at the closing session of the NHCLC Board Meeting at Abundant Life Church of God. She spoke about her father, Dr. Martin Luther King’s, fight for justice and the future of the “Black and Brown” communities uniting in the body of Christ for America. Over the years, Bernice has had the occasion to speak at leading universities across the country and Fortune 500 businesses across the world.
Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, President of The NHCLC, said, “Prophetic, historical and inspiring best describes the 2011 NHCLC/Hispanic NAE Board Convention. To have in one room the pastors of America’s largest Hispanic Evangelical Congregations like Jim Tolle, Danny De Leon, Chris Richards, Ruben Guajardo, Jaime Loya and others in addition to the leaders of the leading denominations such as Assemblies of God, Baptists, Foursquare, Church of God, Evangelical Free, Wesleyan, Open Bible and the rest speaks to a special anointing upon the Hispanic American Church. Elder Bernice King’s message brought us all to our feet as God confirmed the mantle to lead a righteousness and justice movement for his Name Sake.”
The NHCLC Board is comprised of 72 denominational leaders from across America. More than 100 leaders representing every region of the US convened to discuss the NHCLC highlights of 2010 that have impacted the NHCLC’s seven directives of Life, Family, Great Commission, Stewardship, Justice, Education and Youth. They also shaped vision and steps for the future of the NHCLC through 2011 and beyond.
Select board members and sponsors spoke on current documented trends and trajectories affecting America’s youth, family, Church, media, orphans, the poor, and education directly related to the Hispanic community in America which now exceeds the 50 million mark in population making them the largest minority group in the country according to the recent US Census.
Jim Tolle, Sr. Pastor of La Iglesia En El Camino in California, said, “The NHCLC is having a growing and significant impact upon America. They are a new breed of organization representing tens of thousands of charities, churches, businesses and educational institutions that are actively seeking to transform society’s present-day realities of poverty, high drop out rates in schools, teen pregnancies and family instability. As it seeks to apply the values of Jesus Christ in compassionate and fresh ways to today’s challenges, the NHCLC is a powerful force to be reckoned with its constituency of more than 20 million people. In addition to the powerful spiritual encouragement given to all in attendance by NHCLC President, Reverend Sam Rodriguez, many partnership opportunities and networking relationships were forged at the two-day meeting.”
“The NHCLC Board meeting made history as there prevailed a clearer sense of direction towards the future of the organization. The development of its initiative by direct actions holds great promise. The presence of Dr. Bernice A. King and the initial intent toward a Black-Brown alliance represents an unprecedented future for America’s church and society,” said Dr. Jesse Miranda, President of The Miranda Center and CEO of NHCLC.
“There is something very surreal about seeing history unfold before us. I claim as one of my best friends an African-American minister, Dr. Dante Upshaw. We have dreamed and prayed to see our communities work together and have worked for it to happen. But what happened at our last NHCLC meeting with Sister King and Brother Rodriguez and the many other ethnic leaders joining was the realization of a dream-a dream with our eyes wide open. May we never go back to dreaming but live this hope through to America,” said, Dr. Alejandro Mandes, EFCA Hispanic Ministries Director.
The NHCLC Board of Directors also dedicated four awards during the Board Convention and the closing ceremony. Dr. Carlos Campo, President of Regent University, was awarded “The Excellence in Leadership Award,” Rev. Eliezer Bonilla, Pastor of Abundant Life Church, was awarded “The Ricardo Tanon Award” for Pastor of The Year, Rev. Eve Nunez was awarded “The Esther Award” for Prophetic Witness in The Face of Adversity and Rev. Juan Ramos was awarded “The Gideon Award.”
The National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference is the Hispanic National Association of Evangelicals unifying, serving and representing the Hispanic Born Again Community via 34,200 member churches and 20 million constituents by reconciling the vertical and horizontal of the Christian message through the 7 Directives of Life, Family, Great Commission, Stewardship, Justice, Education and Youth.