Meet Mandy Fernandez

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In GABN, New Pastors

In September, GABN welcomed five new pastors and church planters into our Network: Mandy Fernandez of the Rock Church, Matt Dye of M28, Kevin Cuthbertson of First Baptist Chattahoochee, Chad Williams of HighView Church and Jongill Lee of Logos Mission.

Here is our interview with Mandy Fernandez, pastor of The Rock Church in Woodstock.

Q –  Why Atlanta?

A – My family and I moved to Atlanta in 2004 at the request of a pastor from Woodstock. He had noticed the increase in Hispanics living and working in the area. His church tried to reach them in various ways but didn’t seem to make headway. So through a mutual friend I got in contact with this pastor and made several exploratory visits from Miami. After much prayer, fasting, and counsel my family and a team of families and singles decided to move to metro Atlanta to start a Hispanic church. We started the church in February 2005 in my living room.

Q – What can you tell us about your church?

A – By God’s grace our church has grown to over 300 people in two locations. We have the mother church in Woodstock and a daughter church in Gwinnett County. Our plans are to start two new congregations in Atlanta proper in November 2013. These two congregations will meet in the same location, but one will be in English and one in Spanish. Our people come from many parts of Latin America (from Uruguay to Mexico and all of the greater Caribbean islands) and from North America.

Q – Why GABN?

A – We joined GABN because of its conservative Biblical values and the vision and heart of the great men who lead it. We wanted to be part of the wider body of Christ to better reach our community and state, but we wanted to do it with like-minded believers. So we have found a great connection and fellowship with the leaders of GABN.

Q –  How did you come to Christ?

A – I trusted in Christ when I was about 12 or 13 years old. My sister was dating a guy who was a Christian, and I was the chaperone. He shared with us about the rapture of the Church, the tribulation, and hell. Then he shared the good news that Jesus died for our sins and that faith alone in Christ will save us. One night after hearing that message I ran to my bed and put my faith in Christ.

Q – What led you into pastoral ministry?

A – While I was a teenager, I felt a deep desire to be a pastor. The only other thing I wanted to be was a US Army general, because my favorite WWII hero was General George S. Patton. I wanted to be like him. But Jesus’ calling won and so I am grateful and happy to pastor a few of God’s sheep.

Q – What can you tell us about your family?

A – My wife’s name is Rosemary. She homeschooled all of our four children, so she is the hero of the family. My elder son is named Armando Jr.  He graduated from Georgia State University and is working in midtown at PWC as an accountant. My daughter, Joy, graduated from Emory and is a nurse-practitioner working at St. Joseph’s clinic in Northeast Plaza on Buford Highway. My two younger boys, Josiah & Timothy, are both full-time students at Kennesaw State University.

Q – How can we be praying for you?

A – Pray that we can continue to see people saved, baptized, and discipled. Pray that from these disciples God will raise up leaders so that we can continue to be a church-planting church. Our vision is to have six congregations in and around Atlanta by 2016 (Vision 6:16). Pray that God would make that a reality for us.