Spotlight Story

06 July 2022

Pastors Jesus Garcia & Bethzaida Perez: Transforming Communities and Transitioning Into Agents of Change

Category: Spotlight Story

In September 2021, Pastor Garcia and his wife Bethzaida Perez were called to serve at Church of the City in New London, Connecticut. Before becoming a senior pastor, Pastor Garcia began his career at 22-years-old in youth ministry. His ability to lead and strengthen a congregation has led him to collaborate with Hispanic Access Foundation’s Unity in Community to vaccinate underserved populations.

“We first got involved with Hispanic Access through Hispanic Leadership Network when we were still living in Puerto Rico,” said Pastor Garcia. “We didn’t know what God had planned for us, but Hispanic Access has been an amazing source of support and inspiration during this period of transition.”

During the pandemic, Pastor Garcia and Perez participated in Hispanic leadership Network Cohorts where they got to meet and connect with other faith leaders across the country. This opportunity allowed them to share ideas, listen to other pastors and learn about the work they were doing to support their community. At Church of the City, Pastor Garcia and Perez implement community outreach initiatives to engage people with the church. From food drives to vaccine clinics, their spirit of servitude impacts hundreds of people.

“With the vaccine clinics, we decided to have a flexible afternoon schedule because we want to ensure everyone has a chance to get vaccinated,” said Perez. “Recently, we had a family of Haitian immigrants stop by and it's because of our partnership with Hispanic Access that we were able to help them.”

This time has been one of change and adaptation, but Pastor Garcia and his wife are dedicated to the people they serve. As faith leaders, they recognize the importance of collaborating with others, to have a lasting impact. Their involvement with Hispanic Access goes beyond vaccinating the Latino community—it’s about serving God.

“We believe that the temple needs to be used every day of the week, not just on Sundays,” said Pastor Garcia. “Like Hispanic Access, we also want to empower our community and advocate for them during times of great need.”

Hispanic Access is inspiring, training, and supporting local leaders like Pastors Jesus Garcia and Bethzaida Perez, who have a stake in their community and have the drive for positive change. To help support and continue this work, please consider making a Charitable Donation

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Hispanic Access Foundation connects Latinos and others with partners and opportunities to improve lives and create an equitable society.

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