Central Reformed Presbyterian Church, Matanzas, is an urban church, in downtown Matanzas, Cuba, comprised of people from all over the city, including some marginal and peripheral neighborhoods. This is a very diverse congregation by age, education, social configuration, and ethno-cultural backgrounds (African descendants, Korean descendants, and European descendants). There are 82 members, with around 90 worshippers every Sunday. Central Presbyterian is a very vibrant and involved congregation.
Central Presbyterian has a long standing tradition of Christian witness through the proclamation of the word of God, worship, and Christian education. For this church, the biblical and theological formation of its membership has been one of its main concerns throughout the years. Pastoral care and service to the community through different projects and programs have been a must for this church.
For almost two decades the women’s group has developed a program with seniors from the community, providing breakfast for 15 seniors every Saturday. Women have also provided cloth and hygienic bags from time to time. This program has continued to grow in number and service. Lunch is provided every Saturday for seniors from the community and the church. At present, Central is very focused on the ministry with children and adolescents. Some of them come to church with relatives, others are from marginal neighborhoods. One of these neighborhoods is far away from church; so the pastors have them picked up in the church's bus every Sunday. They are given a light snack between Sunday school and the worship service. The bus returns them after service.
High school ministry
More than 1000 students attend the school in front of the church building. The idea for a tutoring program came about to spread the ministry of the church and from October 5th every year, more than 20 students, from 10th grade come every day to the church to receive tutoring on Math, Chemistry, Physics, History and Spanish. After this program started, Central received lots more of applications but because of issues of capacity, Central was not able to increase the number of students. Central committed to serve these students until they finish 12th grade and do the national test to enter to university in Cuba.
In 2006 the church founded four missions in two Eastern provinces: Moa, Marcané, and Holguín congregations in Holguin Province; and Manatí congregation in Las Tunas province. From time to time, the pastors and an elder visit them. Every year, their leaders come to Matanzas for pastoral and biblical training at the Seminary up the hill from the Church. Right now there is a member of Central who belongs to one of the Holguin churches who is advising these four missions.
The photos below are from the 2022 Christmas service.