14 Jan


By Mike Maldonado – Colorado Springs, Colorado … The Central Adventist church in Colorado Springs ended 2020 with a Sabbath afternoon celebration of five baptisms, including a community member who attends the local Baptist church.

How does an Adventist pastor get the opportunity to baptize an individual who attends the Baptist church? By being active in the community and fostering fraternal relationships with fellow clergy.

Mike Maldonado, pastor of Colorado Springs Central Adventist Church, has spent the last three years building a relationship with John Harris, the local Baptist pastor. The friends visit and worship in each other’s churches.

When Harris learned that Maldonado would be baptizing four individuals on December 26, he asked Maldonado to baptize one his congregants, as his age and frail health made it difficult for him to do so, Maldonado said.

On Sabbath afternoon December 26, the Baptist church attendee stood alongside four other individuals who were publicly declaring their love for Jesus Christ. Some 30 individuals joined in the celebration held at Central church, including many from the Baptist church.

Harris took part in the service by offering prayer and remarks prior to the baptisms, saying, “This is one of the most meaningful and beautiful baptismal services I have ever attended!”

The baptisms conclude a year of blessing for the congregation, but one that was also very tiring and stressful for many members. It also caps a year in which Central had the opportunity to celebrate 44 decisions for baptism, people who declared Jesus as their Savior.

“It goes without saying that 2020 was a difficult year for all of us,” said Pastor Maldonado.

“Yet, despite the pandemic and other disruptions, 2020 proved to be one of the most fruitful years for growth at Central Seventh-day Adventist Church in Colorado Springs. The Holy Spirit blessed Central with forty-four baptisms, each representing a precious person won for the Kingdom of God”

Mike Maldonado is Pastor of the Central Adventist Church, photos courtesy of Central church’s Facebook.

02 Sep


By Mike Maldonado – Colorado Springs, Colorado…Members of the Colorado Springs Central Church are reaching out to the homeless community by providing lunch every Sabbath.

The outreach was formed after Mike Maldonado, Colorado Springs Central pastor, challenged the congregation to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth. Members began to look for ways to impact the community by getting out of the saltshaker (the church) and into the world (the local community).

The congregation formed a new ministry, Jesus Loves You (JLY) Ministry, started by Jones Tu’ufuli, who became aware that many of the homeless in Colorado Springs were not being served by the local homeless shelter or soup kitchen. They are living in makeshift camps in wooded areas, city parks or along the river and were not getting food or clothes on a regular basis.

At first Tu’ufull brought leftover potluck food to the camps, building a relationship of trust with them, including serving meals on Christmas and Easter morning.

It was apparent that more food and more help was needed. This was the beginning of the JLY ministry.

Volunteers joined the effort to help make and deliver meals to the camps and parks in town.

The operation grew so much that a designated space off campus had to be found to store supplies and food.

“The JLY ministry is taking the gospel to the streets and reaching the forgotten homeless with the love of Jesus,” Maldonado said.

With the assistance of Cathy Kissner, RMC Adventist Community Services director, a grant was obtained to buy food and supplies, including shelving and wagons, to haul the food.

Every Sabbath, some twelve volunteers cook, pack and deliver food and water to two different locations, providing 125 sack lunches to the homeless. The sack lunches also include spiritual food in the form of a religious pamphlet. The volunteers pray and show the love of Jesus through their actions to the community.

Army Chaplain Yepsica Moreno, who often serves on the outreach team, encourages soldiers from Fort Carson to join in with the outreach activities.

The goal of the JLY ministry is for the homeless to know they are not forgotten, and that Jesus loves them. Those receiving food are always very appreciative and ask who we are or what church we belong to. In the winter, warm clothes, blankets and hot chocolate are also provided along with the lunches.

The long-term vision is to buy a food truck and have an even greater impact on helping alleviate hunger among this forgotten population group.

“Thank you for caring about us and not forgetting us. God bless you,” one homeless individual stated.

Mike Maldonado is pastor of the Colorado Springs Central Adventist Church; photo supplied

21 Jul


By Mike Maldonado – Colorado Springs, Colorado … As we live in a socially distance world, God’s Word is still reaching those who hunger for knowledge.

When the pandemic hit many pastors had a choice to make concerning Bible studies.  How can you do Bible studies when you can’t meet together?  One would expect with the lack of normal baptismal studies our churches would see a sharp decrease in new believers.

The Colorado Springs Central church has experienced the opposite.  In the span of two Sabbaths at the end of May and the beginning July, Central baptized and welcomed seven new members to the family of believers.

“Praise God that during the pandemic and lockdown of the church the gospel was still being preached, Bible studies were still being given, and hearts were convicted to follow Jesus,” Mike Maldonado, pastor of Colorado Springs Central stated.

The news spread on Facebook which caused great joy to be shared.  “People are hungry for the word of God,” one individual commented. “[This is] wonderful news to hear. Praise God,” stated another.

Even through changeling times we can be assured the gospel is still going forth in the Rocky Mountain Conference.

–Mike Maldonado is lead pastor of Colorado Springs Central church; photos courtesy of Facebook