Manuel Padilla is a missionary of the General Board of Global Ministries of The United Methodist Church serving as a missionary for strategy and ministry of the National Plan for Hispanic/Latino Ministry in the US. He is based in Nashville, Tennessee and was commissioned in October 2013.
He works closely with annual conferences as they pursue the goals of more effective ministry with the rapidly growing Hispanic/Latino population. The National Plan, launched in 1992, is a churchwide, interagency approach to planting new churches, revitalizing existing ones, and engaging United Methodists in ministries with growing Hispanic/Latino communities. The Hispanic/Latino population in the US today is around 50.6 million (16.3 percent of the total population) and will constitute 30 percent of the total population by the year 2050.
Manuel is a native of Monterrey, Mexico, where he is a member of the Refugio de Paz Methodist Church in Guadalupe in the Oriental Annual Conference. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in technology management from Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon in Monterrey, and a Master of Arts degree in Christian Leadership from Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky, graduating from the latter at the end of 2012.
After working in retail in Mexico, he worked for five years as a project manager for CEMEX, the building materials company.
Both of his parents are pastors in the Methodist Church of Mexico. The important gift of growing up in a strongly church-related home, he says, is that it planted the seed of God’s word in his heart, and that seed would later grow. After going through a period of “Sunday Christianity,” Manuel realized that the seed in his heart was coming to maturity. He realized that God’s hand was guiding him. “It was in my mid-twenties, after chasing meaningless, empty, and worldly dreams, that I finally realized the truth that God had taught me through my parents.”
He says he was not sure what his new life would look like when he enrolled in Asbury Seminary. His involvement in a Hispanic/Latino ministry in Cincinnati, Ohio during seminary left him no doubt that God was calling him to ministry in mission.
Manuel is married to Susana Armendariz.
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- Last profile update: 21 Aug 2014
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