Immanuel 100th Anniversary
100. This number is a big number. Who wouldn’t like $100 extra dollars in their pocket? Or 100 more episodes of your favorite show?
100 more vacation days! Wow that’d be great. 100 more days to live for many suffering a terminal illness would be a Godsend. 100 years for any institution is a milestone. It is a milestone for Immanuel Baptist Church here in El Paso. A church that had it’s early start as a mission in El Paso as many were wanting a place to hear God’s Word on Sundays. So a mission called Alta Vista Mission was started with many families attending as they served and shared the gospel in that area of central El Paso.
The mission grew and the need for a building was met. Through financial ups and downs the congregation moved to a church building on Stevens St. and changed the name to Government Hill Baptist Church in 1919 when it officially became a church body and not a mission. It was now a “church with a mission”. A mission to fulfill the “Great Commission” as commanded by God in Mathew 28: 18-20. “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always to the end of age.”
This is the purpose of the church, to share the gospel of Christ with others and encourage them in their walk with Him. It’s not about us and being recognized as a 100 year “Legacy” church. It is about doing God’s work in the community and the city of El Paso. God has always had a purpose for Immanuel Church as the named became official in 1922. The new location on Hawkins occurred in 1968 and just a year later Immanuel Christian School started in this same location with a daycare. Now it includes K3 -12th grade and offers a Biblically based, high standard private education to students from El Paso and Juarez that has brought a new dimension in the church’s ministry to the community. The students serve the community and learn the meaning of loving God and loving others. Serving God by serving others. Not by works do we attain salvation, but by a deep relationship with our
Father in Heaven.
We live in a broken and chaotic world. We are engulfed in turmoil, wars, violence, racism, political divide and uncertainty as a nation as well. If we only turn our eyes to Christ and His message can we find hope, peace and love that we all yearn for. We wish to find answers in power, wealth, popularity and in social media and politics.
The answer has always been there. Not religion as man has formed it, but a relationship with Jesus. One He wishes for us to have with Him.
Caring for the poor, the orphans, the widows and those hurting and in despair.. Immanuel means” God with Us”. God has been faithful to us for so many years despite our shortcomings as a church and as a people. We fail and fail so many times and in so many ways yet God continues to love and forgive us. So as a church with a mission and a vision in our wonderful city that is so culturally diverse, we will continue to trust God, follow God and serve and love God as we continue in this amazing journey. Always welcoming the Holy Spirit to guide us and fill us every day as we seek Him.
Thanks to all those before us from Alta Vista Mission in 1913 to Government Hill on Stevens St in the 20’s to what is now Immanuel Church on the corner of Hawkins and Viscount. To the young and old, men and women, teachers and laymen, past pastors, missionaries, and students that have faithfully followed God’s direction and plans for Immanuel. We continue to be a church that is culturally diverse and even our worship style has changed throughout the years with very young praise band leading us in worship on Sundays The message hasn’t changed throughout the years. It is still the Gospel of Christ. We look forward to the next years never losing focus on His purpose as hearts are touched and lives impacted by ministry that relies on the inherent and infallible Word of God for it’s foundation. We pray for
all that seek Him as we ourselves continue to seek out His will in our
lives. Immanuel – God with Us. 1919 – 2019, 100 Years.
That is indeed a blessing. “And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age” says the Lord. All honor and glory to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!!
Lead Pastor JC Rico