Pastor Waleska Trinidad always knew Team Vital was a good idea. Now with Team Vital resources available in Spanish and Korean, it’s even better than she thought.
Trinidad is the pastor at Primera Iglesia Metodista Unida Wesley in Trenton, a primarily Hispanic congregation. When Trinidad and Team Vital members from her church sat down for a meeting, she and others were glad to have Spanish language material available.
“We have a mix of people when it comes to languages,” Trinidad said. “We have some bilingual people, then we have some people who need a little bit of help (to speak English) and then we have people who speak no English at all.
“When you have the book in Spanish, it helps have variety in the group. You don’t have to pick on certain people to talk now just because of the language barrier. Everybody is able to participate because it is all in Spanish.”
Trinidad also pointed out that the quality of the translation was appreciated as well.
“The translation is very good,” she said. “It’s not a Google translation. It’s well-translated and the same message is there. The questions they want you to answer you get the real meaning out of them.”
So far the Team Vital overview booklet and brochure have been made available in Spanish. The brochure is available in Korean and the overview is currently in the translation process for Korean.
Delaware Bay District Superintendent Jisun Kwak believes the Korean translations will have a similar effect for Greater New Jersey’s Korean-based churches.
“By providing this great resource in their comfortable tongue, it will help people not only learn about Team Vital, which can be a great resource for them, it can also help them feel more connected to the conference,” said Kwak, who has also been a superintendent in the Gateway North District. “English is not a comfortable means of communication for some of them.”
Kwak agrees that Team Vital is organized so it can fit in any kind of church.
“Team Vital promotes the visioning process and focusing on the action plan, and those things are really relevant in any culture,” she said.
Trinidad says a real value for Team Vital is that it is cross cultural.
“It doesn’t matter what your situation is or whether you are an Anglo, Hispanic or Korean church,” she said. “It is about your vision and the expectations for your church and community. I am very pleased with the way it is designed. The people here are very excited.”
Trinidad hopes Team Vital will not just influence the church, but that the ripple effect will spread into the surrounding community.
“We were excited to see what we need to do as a church and that includes being vital,” she said. “Our community needs and deserves a vital church. We were not sure what to expect at first, but we thought let’s try it out. We thought if we need to translate things or bring it into our own reality, we could. But thank God we didn’t have to do that.”
Part of the Team Vital plan allows congregations to come along side one another as they assess their own communities and ministry assets, become equipped for effective ministry, plan future ministry, receive technical support for putting their plans into action and as a result grow in their vitality.
“What we have seen so far is that we are going to work in discipleship and how we are going to receive new people that come in and integrate them into the life of the church,” Trinidad said. “We want to help our people grow in their spiritual life and empower them to make more disciples.”
Trinidad also believes Team Vital can have a positive impact on all Hispanic communities in Greater New Jersey.
“We are really glad to have the resources in Spanish and I hope all of the Hispanic churches go into Team Vital,” she said. “This is something that can make a difference in the Hispanic community.”