Yanett Palacios, pastor of Iglesia Evangélica Menonita Roca del Salvación in Guatemala City, was born in Nebaj, a region plagued by the worst violence of the 1980’s. As a child, Yanett witnessed the assassination of her grandfather as he played marimba. She also lost many other family members, neighbors, and friends. Yanett reflects, “Fear and anger followed me throughout my childhood.”
From Despair to Hope
Over time, Yanett realized that to develop as a healthy woman, she needed to let go of her fears and forgive those who had brought this suffering to her family and others. Her studies at SEMILLA Latin American Anabaptist Seminary taught her the restorative message of Jesus, a call to live the Reign of God in the midst of oppression. She committed her life to accompany the vulnerable and marginalized, bringing hope, love, and compassion through pastoral work.
Healing Through Action
Roca del Salvación is in Zone 6, an area of abject poverty, drugs and human trafficking, extortion, and gang violence. Yanett’s sermons focus on teaching love and acceptance, care for the needy, peacemaking, and empowerment of women and children. Sunday school teachers invite children from the nearby ravines for breakfast, church women share food with hungry neighbors, and a weekday program gives hope and confidence to children in the community who learn to play musical instruments.
Yanett says, “With all my heart, I appreciate SEMILLA for providing such amazing resources and support for me and hundreds of others throughout Latin America.”
God’s shalom to you.