Stories from our field

“Jesus rescued me from a life of disorder and sin”

Stories from our field

“Jesus rescued me from a life of disorder and sin”

Jesús Enrique Garcés Castañeda was born into a Roman Catholic family. After a period of living his life detached from God, he gave his life to Jesus and became a pastor. In addition, he is now active as a mentor for GlobalRize. Jesús: “In GlobalRize, I have found a family that guides me in my pastoral vocation to grow and share what God has graciously given me.”

Jesús Enrique did not exactly have an easy childhood. He grew up in poverty as the fourth child in a family of six and suffered bullying from his siblings. His father had children with two different women and had to work hard to support both families.

Immoral lifestyle

Thanks to a godmother, Nelly Lara, Jesús Enrique was able to attend school. Nelly took him to the Roman Catholic church every Sunday from the age of six and advised him against having contact with Protestants. Jesús Enrique became an altar boy and even a possible candidate to go to seminary. 

At seventeen, Jesús began to distance himself from religion and only went to church out of habit. Three years later, he began to suffer from a strange illness that affected the oxygenation of his brain. He felt disappointed in God. A year later he began training for a career as a sports teacher. It was the beginning of a period in his life which was marked by immorality.

“I cannot live without Christ”

Meeting a girl, Sabrina Castillo, introduced a turnaround in his life. She accepted him, including his health issues. She took him to a church where he came to know Christ. In 2012, he was baptized. Jesús: “I thank God for bringing me out of a life of disorder and sin. Being a Christian is the best thing that could have happened to me. I cannot, will not and do not know how to live without Christ.”

Pastoral position

In 2014, he became a member of the First Baptist Church of Duaca, a congregation where he experienced many highs and lows. Jesús Enrique: “In 2018 I enrolled with the Baptist Bible Institute of Lara State, from which I graduated in 2021. In that period I was allowed to preach, along with another elder who was studying at the Bible Institute. In 2022, I was unanimously elected to hold a pastoral position within the congregation.” The church currently has 50 baptized members. Twelve people participate in a discipleship program. The congregation is very active in evangelism and social work.

Growing in faith online

Jesús Enrique wanted to deepen his faith and looked for discipleship material online: “I found GlobalRize’s site and started doing some of their courses in mid-2022, starting with Bible Basics. My mentor was very patient with me, prayed for me, counseled me and was my mentor in my pastoral ministry.


After that first course, I did other courses and began to get interested in becoming an online mentor myself. But I worried about whether I had the skills and knowledge. I prayed about it and a month later I completed the form.”

Passion for lost souls

“After a while I was contacted by our brother Arjan Vaders (ed.: Arjan is our language team coach) who helped me enormously. Actually, everything motivated me to join: the sequence of classes, the well-chosen topics, the sound Biblical teaching, the passion for lost people and missionary work, and the use of technology as a valuable ally in the discipleship process. 

Only at GlobalRize have I seen and experienced so much care and emphasis on Christ, both in terms of teaching the Gospel in every course, and the focus on mission. I have never encountered another website that offers so much help and asks no money in return.
In GlobalRize, I have found a family that guides me in my pastoral calling to grow and share what God has graciously given me. It is a joy and privilege for me to serve with this organization to the honor and glory of the Most High God!”

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