I’m Deaconess Noemí Guerra and I’m honored to be the Mission Support Specialist for Area A and an Evangelist Trainer/Coach for all areas of the Texas District. This is my story. I was born and raised in Panama City, Panama, and moved to the US at the age of 18. I have been married to my High School sweetheart, Rev. Lincon Guerra, for almost 21 years. We have 3 children: Joash is 19 years old and a Freshman in College, Lincon Aaron is 16 and a Junior in High School, and Lizzie is 15 and a Freshman in High School.
We recently moved to Texas from Iowa.
My parents have been missionaries since before I was born. I grew up in church. I always felt a close connection with God and I knew I wanted to serve Him. When I was 18 years old, my family received a call to serve the Latino community in Houston, Texas at St. Paul Lutheran Church. So we packed up and moved to the US.
The transition was not easy. But I remember hanging on to Matthew 19:29 says: “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life.”
I had just graduated high school so my parents enrolled me right into college when we moved. I spoke very little English, so you would see me in college walking around with a big dictionary trying to keep up. It was very difficult. I cried every day and I promised myself that I would learn English, get a degree and help other Spanish-speaking people in their transition to the US as their new home. And I did.
Later on, I went to Concordia Seminary St. Louis and received my Deaconess certification through the Center of Hispanic Studies and my Masters in Practical and Systematic Theology. What better way to learn to serve the body of Christ?!
I served in three churches before receiving the call to the Texas District. I served in music ministry, youth, children, and adult ministries. I did a little bit of everything. But, the best part was teaching ESL classes. I was honored and so excited to be able to teach English to those who are making the US their new home.
I also accepted other small jobs to keep me busy. (I may be a little hyper). I taught Spanish and Religion at a Lutheran School for some time, I wrote for Portals of Prayer and Portales de Oración, I wrote for the Lutheran Mission Matters, I even worked for the Department of Justice.
I now work for the Lutheran Hour Ministries as a Program Developer for the Hispanic Ministry and for the Texas District using the skills and knowledge I acquired at the Seminary. I consider all of this part of my “hundredfold” that God promised.
I am very excited to announce that May 1st is the first day of the first Evangelist Training in Area A!
An evangelist is a person who is reaching out to new people with the Gospel, is trained by the district or by a local ministry according to district-established or mutually agreed upon training guidelines, and is not an ordained or commissioned minister of the LCMS.
I’m working closely with the pastors of our circuit. The vision is to raise evangelists to help start an ESL program in the Fall and to plant a new church in Farewell soon.
For more information on the Evangelist Training Program visit txlcms.org/lay-evangelist-training/
By Deaconess Noemi Guerra