Recognizing Hispanic Heritage Month at Chapel

October 4, 2021 Jaidyn Kamplain

On Sep. 21, Hardin-Simmons University invited Rene Maciel ‘81, Missions Pastor at First Woodway Baptist Church in Waco, Texas, to speak at chapel. Maciel first stepped on campus 45 years ago as a freshman and reminisced on his time as a student.

Page of 1981 Bronco with Rene Maciel

1981 Bronco with Rene Maciel

Maciel went on to discuss the importance of crossover moments, “God gives us opportunities to be around things in our life that introduces us to new life, new experiences. I think of those crossover moments in my life. Coming to Hardin-Simmons was a crossover moment for me. I met my wife at Hardin-Simmons. I buried my dad here in Abilene, Texas. I received my degree here. We all go through these peak moments in our life that God continues to teach us about His incredible love and grace for us.”

He went on to encourage HSU students to follow God, be open to His will, and in doing so recognize their own crossover moments. He followed up with Joshua 3:5: “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.”

“We are called to be crossover people. God has a plan and a purpose for you,” said Maciel.

Maciel’s role as a Missions Pastor in Waco has allowed him many opportunities to promote cultural awareness for Hispanic communities. By meeting regularly with Hispanic pastors and learning how to bring Hispanic communities together, Maciel hopes churches in his area will continue to be spaces of inclusivity for people of all backgrounds.

Maciel encouraged the students of Hardin-Simmons to trust that God will bring them through challenges, much like God did for the people of Israel.

Rene Maciel preaching at chapel.“I hope Hardin-Simmons continues to encourage the activity and opportunities of connecting cultures and continues to celebrate the culture that the Hispanic community brings to the school,” said Maciel. “When I was in school, I was one of just a few Hispanic students here at Hardin-Simmons. It’s great to come back and hear about Sangre and all the Hispanic students that are here.”

Sangre hosted this week’s chapel service to highlight Hispanic leadership within the community. Sangre’s mission is to educate group members and the larger community about the diverse Hispanic and Latino cultures.