Our Missionaries in Chiapas

Jan and Pastor Pablo Feliciano Cruz

pj2Pablo and Jan Feliciano Cruz have been serving together in Chiapas since 1984.  Pablo is a native of the Tzeltal people group from Southern Mexico.  Jan Kok grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan in an American middle class home. Pablo Feliciano Cruz was reared in Yaxoquintela, Chiapas, Mèxico. 

When Pablo was a boy, his father, Tiburcio, was the maintenance superintendant of the Wycliffe Bible Society’s jungle camp that was located in Yax. It was here that Wycliffe trained prospective missionaries before sending them into remote locations to carry the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the indigenous peoples. It was here that Pablo first encountered English speaking people and learned to speak English before he spoke Spanish. It was here that Pablo developed his life-long love of the Bible and Jesus. It was here that Pablo learned construction skills, mechanical skills and people skills. To this day he can fix nearly anything or build anything or relate to anybody. He developed his strong faith in this small village and never forgot those roots.

 Jan and Pablo met while both attending bible college in Grand Rapids. After Pablo graduated, Jan moved to Chiapas with the expectation of marrying Pablo but only after a year of actual living in Chiapas to make certain that she understood exactly what she was getting into and that she could make it her life long home. Jan moved to Yax to live with Pablo’s parents while Pablo pursued a ministry that required a great deal of travel. Jan’s immersion into Tzeltal culture was intense but she knew where her heart lay: in ministry as the partner and wife of Pablo. They were married in September of 1984.

Over the course of the next thirty years, Pablo has been involved in numerous ministries and positions of responsibility with the Tzeltal Synod of the National Presbyterian Church of México. He has served as the pastor of village churches. He has been the president of the seminary in Villahermosa. He organized and was president of the Bible school in Ocosingo. He has served as president of the Synod and of its non-profit arm. He has taught other pastors, taught lay pastors and been the mediator for numerous conflicts that have arisen in the life of the Synod’s churches. Pablo was the visionary and construction manager for Dispensario Tzeltal Manos de Cristo, the Synod’s health clinic in Ocosingo, that was dedicated in March 2012 and that is now serving the indigenous people of Chiapas. He currently pastors the church in Sibal, a village in the jungle. He currently serves as president of Hebrón de Desarrollo Tzeltal, the Mexican partner of Hebron USA, which operates Manos de Cristo, hosts American medical missions to Chiapas, hosts American construction missions to Chiapas and is involved with other development projects of the Synod churches. He travels extensively throughout the Tzeltal regions of Chiapas solving problems, managing conflicts, preaching the Gospel and serving as resource to the Synod. Just keeping pace with his myriad roles is exhausting

 Pablo and Jan are in part supported by donors and churches in the U.S. through Hebron USA.  In return they support, sustain and inspire their community and their American supporters in the spirit of the Jesus Christ.

Learn more about Jan

Learn more about Pablo

Message from Pablo Feliciano Cruz

 

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9 comments on “Our Missionaries in Chiapas
  1. Joe Neel says:

    Pablo Cruz, saw your video. Thank you for your hard work there in Chiapas. I am Joe Neel, a Christian for over 40 yrs and I attend Prestonwood North Baptist church in Prosper, Tx. The ladies in our adult sunday school class made up some 164 dresses for young girls and sent them with a group of 8 mission volunteers from our church on a mission tri[p to Chiapas in April 2014. I do not know how large the Chiapas area really is. Hopefully the 164 dresses ended up at an orphanage in your area. You might have heard of it. Our ladies love the idea of trying to reach out to the pobrecita children in mexico. We could make more dresses for the young girls. I am guessing that some of these have never had a dress of their own.
    Big question is, how to get the dresses to you or other Christian leaders in Chiapas and not be charged a fortune for shipping.
    Would you and your associates like to have a number of dresses to give away there?

    Joe Neel 214-773-2246 joe@neelgroup.com

  2. Ron Brown says:

    I was in Jungle Camp the summer of 1971 as part of a summer training program with the Navigators. Your dad’s name is so familiar. I spent part of the summer with the Tanksley’s in San Cristobal-I had to have a root canal. Posey was the head of Jungle Camp.

    • Hi Ron,
      I just came back from Yaxoquitela which I visited on the way to Naja’ and Lacanja’ Chansayab. I’ve been visiting the Lacandones each year since 1999 when my dad died of a massive heart attack. I don’t know what happened to the previous pastor at San Javier. Last year I met Obregon the new pastor there. The Lacandone pastor at Lacanja’ Chansayab is a childhood friend of mine. The biggest problem among the Lacandones is that the children are not following the Lord.

    • Karl Ingersoll says:

      Hi Ron, I have some pictures you might be interested in; slides my aunt, Pat Ingersoll, took while at Jungle camp. Not certain of the year, but 70s is about right.

      I sent a link to a Google Photos album to the Hebronusa email address. I’m hoping they will be able to “share” the folder with anyone there that is interested. I’m not sure how this will work without publicly sharing email, which I don’t want to do, but I will see if I can coordinate through Hebron.

  3. […] Our Missionaries in Chiapas […]

  4. […] was an old photo that I found from when I traveled to Yaxaquintela.  We traveled to the “Jungle Camp” as it was previously called by the Wycliffe Missionary Training Camp members.  After […]

  5. kkingersoll says:

    My aunt, Patricia Ingersoll, was at Jungle camp in the 1970s. I have an album of photos that include a number from there that I thought some of you might be interested in.

    It is a Google Photo album. You can access it with this link https://goo.gl/photos/fpfiVkBkNA9enAGt5

    Cheers

    Karl Ingersoll

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