Global Church Planting Network

Accelerating Church Planting Globally

Church on the Roof

ChurchOnRoofRonald Torres is a carpenter by trade and has the heart of a servant. He is originally from Nicaragua but now lives in Panama. “I love this country,” Ronald shares. “I’m very proud God has brought me here.”

As a teen, Ronald got involved in the work of the church. He was a pastor in Nicaragua and when he and his wife came to Panama, they began to attend a church in their denomination. Ronald asked his pastor to use them as needed. His pastor told them that she had always had a desire to start a church in the area where he was living. Ronald agreed wholeheartedly – he saw the need of the people and he had compassion for them.

Ronald was introduced to Héctor Moreno, who then taught him about the church planter training available through Multiplication Network. Ronald says he’s a passionate teacher and has helped them a lot. “It’s been a great experience,” Ronald shares.

Soon after starting the training, Ronald felt confirmed in the call to start a church near his home. As it turned out, the best place to meet was on the roof of his house.

“I said to the Lord, ‘If you want to do it, let’s do it here. I don’t have gold or silver but what I have, I give to you.”

As people began attending the services, Ronald built a simple structure on the top of his roof using what was on hand. “I have wood, I have my hands, I have my heart, I have my effort so I can work for people around here,” he says.

After a year, about 60-80 people are coming to this church plant.

One member is Eden Miranda, who was on drugs for 29 years, from the time he was 12. Eden looked for freedom in worldly solutions but nothing was effective. He was heartbroken and felt like humanity had thrown him out.

But meeting Ronald changed the trajectory of Eden's life. He says, “This experience with my pastor, with his support, his care, his love, his hugs, gave me a new strength, a friend. He’s not just my pastor, he’s my friend. Thank the Lord He put Ronald in my path. He was the push I needed to get out of the hole I was in.”

While on drugs, Eden’s physical appearance had changed. “But God came into my life and now look how I am. I found refuge in Christ. He gave me a new life,” Eden says.

“When I came in that door,” he says, pointing to the door at the back of the building, “I was home. And I’m not leaving!”

Ronald and his congregation have the goal to reach the neighborhood across the street. Their strategy? Use their gifts and talents to build relationships with the people. One member is a construction worker and can lay bricks. Another is an excellent cook, one a roofer, and Eden is an electrician. They plan to provide their services for free for one day and share the Gospel while they work.

“We’re working in the community with the community.”

When Ronald asked his congregation who would join him, they cheered. “I’m not alone,” he shares. “A leader is not born—a leader is made and God calls them and prepares them. Here are my hands for the work.”

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