Hospital Chaplain Plants a Church in Tillamook
Danny Parada is a busy man. As chaplain of Tillamook County General Hospital, he visits patients, prays with them and their families, and offers encouragement to those in need of a little pick-me-up. However, being the spiritual leader at Adventist Health’s hospital on the Oregon coast isn’t his only God-assignment. He also spreads God’s love outside the hospital walls.
Several months ago, Parada was asked by the Oregon Conference to lead a church plant project for Spanish-speaking Adventist believers in Tillamook, Ore. This is no small task, since the group of newly-baptized believers is on fire for God.
It started with three families from La Iglesia de Jesucristo (Church of Christ), who studied scriptures, worshiped and prayed together. One day they came across verses about the Sabbath. They went to their pastor with many questions on their hearts and minds, but his answers didn’t satisfy them.
The group decided to leave their congregation and worship in their homes. After praying, fasting and asking for God’s help, several Adventist couples in the area and the Tillamook Church contacted the group and offered them support and guidance. When the conference asked Parada to volunteer by providing additional support and working to plant a church, he knew this task was for him.
“I wanted to do this because I have a passion for evangelism,” says Parada. “I love seeing that moment when people understand what the Bible teaches, and how they change when they see the light.”
Leading the flock
Parada works with the conference and the Tillamook Church to lead small-group Bible studies nearly every day of the week. Each Sabbath, 30 or more new believers gather to hear him share God’s Word.
Since the church plant began in December, 10 people have been baptized following an evangelistic series presented by Parada. Another evangelistic series is planned for this spring, and he hopes another 10 will baptized.
The group is a ministry of the Tillamook Church and is rapidly growing. Currently, a room in the church serves as their meeting place. Parada says he will have to start two Sabbath services soon to accommodate the growing group who can’t all fit into the small room.
“This is a good problem to have," says Parada. “I have seen God work through the people in the group, the conference and the church. This plant will turn into a beautiful Spanish church in Tillamook.”
“The most important goals of Adventist Health are to minister to the physical, mental and spiritual needs of our communities and beyond,” says Larry Davy, president and CEO of Tillamook County General Hospital. “It is very exciting to watch God consistently use our employees, such as Danny Parada, to positively impact the lives of others in such dramatic ways.”