Renique Rodriguez (’18) only had 30 minutes to prepare a devotional. She was the youngest person on her mission team, she couldn’t speak much Spanish and the devotional was for men at a drug and alcohol rehab center in Honduras.
“I was just praying and asking God for the words to say to speak to these men,” said Renique, a senior missions major from Georgetown, Texas.
Through a translator, she told the men a story from Acts 3 in which the disciples healed a lame man. After the man is healed, he still has to lean on the apostle Peter.
“I said, ‘It’s OK to lean on someone,’ ”Renique said. “You’re here to get help. We’re here to help you, so don’t feel like just because you’re healed you don’t need help from other people.”
She didn’t expect much of a response, but after she spoke, one man came to her and thanked her. He told her the devotional described exactly what he was going through.
As she watched the men find healing both spiritually and physically, Renique realized this was something she could spend the rest of her life doing. The mission she worked with, Predisan Ministries, was the perfect place for her to start learning about holistic healing.
Founded in 1986, Predisan ministers to underprivileged populations in Honduras and focuses on healthcare, community development and spiritual formation. The name Predisan comes from a combination of Spanish words predica which means “to preach” and sanar which means “to heal.” The combination of physical and spiritual healing was just what Rodriguez, a missions major with a minor in biology, wanted to learn about, so the summer after her freshman year she got an internship with Predisan through ACU’s WorldWide Witness program.
“I wanted to be a part of the ministry but also a part of the medical side,” Renique said. “I wanted to see all of it, and Predisan did a great job about being holistic.”
Renique first became interested in medical missions when Dr. Kent Brantly (’03), Ebola survivor and medical missionary, spoke on campus during her freshman year. She said his story sparked her interest and she joined WorldWide Witness the next semester. While searching for an internship, she was connected with Lee Fletcher, a 1999 alumnus who worked at Predisan at the time, who helped her secure a spot in Honduras.
Renique helped in various ministries through Predisan’s holistic health missions, including home visits with pastors and nurses, pregnancy clinics, Vacation Bible Schools, shadowing physical therapists and much more.
“Not only are they taking care of a certain aspect, but they’re taking care of their community in every way they can,” she said. “These people are loving their own people and community.”
Renique graduated this month and has partnered with ACU’s Halbert Center for Missions’s GAP Year Program to move to The Bronx and serve with Global City Mission Initiative (GCMI), an inner-city ministry founded by Jared Looney (’96).
Renique will be joining and will be supervised by fellow alumnus Seth Bouchelle (’13) in serving her new community of New York neighbors.
Learn more about the Halbert Center for Missions and Global Service