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This past Saturday, the Creation Museum had its first-ever “Latin Day” for Spanish speakers. Catering to Hispanics throughout the region, the museum had close to 400 Spanish-speaking visitors enjoy the Creation Museum and hear AiG’s biblical authority message in their first language. Our Spanish-language ministry coordinator, Joe Owen, spent many hours preparing our volunteer translators to be effective in teaching the main messages of the museum; contacting pastors of Hispanic churches in Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky; meeting with people of the wider Hispanic community; and working with our own museum team to ensure that there would be a great program for the day.
My brother Steve serves as senior director of Outreach for AiG. Here is a photo of Steve (to the far right, in a dark coat) greeting a group of Spanish-speakers next to the mastodon in our main hall, with a translator to his left:
Anyone who wants to minister to the Latin community must understand the centrality of the family unit in that culture. From the very beginning of the day, it was evident that the museum was going to be filled with families—many traveling from great distances—to enjoy Latin Day together. It was also a joy to see whole church congregations make the trip to the museum, led by their pastors. While most of the younger generation in the Hispanic community can speak English, they can also understand Spanish. Having a day committed to Spanish translation was a way to allow whole families and churches from the Hispanic community to enjoy the museum.
Throughout the day, we had multiple guided tours where our guests were able to hear instruction in Spanish. Here is a Spanish-speaking guide leading visitors in the Wonders of Creation room:
Many of the people in the tours had never heard answers to questions about the age of the earth, dinosaurs, fossils, evolution, and many other important topics. My brother Steve stated:
I was overwhelmed by the excitement I witnessed right in front of me. You could clearly see the “enlightened eyes” of our guests when they heard answers to seemingly difficult questions as biblical history was finally revealed to them. All day, people were making comments that they had never heard these answers before. They were fully engaged and were constantly making comments and asking questions. I was also very encouraged by their desire to learn and really understand how biblical history relates to the world we see today. They were not just receiving answers—you could see that they were also sincerely thankful for them. It was just excitement for the whole day, and it didn’t end until the doors were closed.Here are our guests viewing the construction of Noah's Ark:
Joe Owen also delivered our first-ever Spanish-language “Relevance of Genesis” talk. Out of almost 400 Hispanics who attended the museum specifically for Latin Day, 350 of them came to hear that presentation. What a joy it was, Steve told me, to see the whole room filled with all ages in their family groups hearing that the Bible can be defended and that we can be confident in its message both about history and about the hope of the gospel. After the message many people were able to obtain newly translated materials, including The New Answers Book in Spanish and witnessing booklets. Steve said that “it was truly satisfying to know that families were walking out of the museum with bags of translated materials to help them to defend the Christian faith and teach their children.”
With special planetarium presentations led by our astronomer Dr. Danny Faulkner and translated into Spanish, special food in the café, and the expected Creation Museum hospitality, our first Latin Day will go down as one of the major museum highlights for 2013. Please join me in praying for all who attended, our Spanish translation ministry in general, and our reach into the Hispanic community to help strengthen the church in this vital area of creation apologetics. (By the way, I will be speaking in Bolivia later this month, and in Mexico in a few months.) Thanks also to all of our volunteer translators for the day who were a real blessing to our Hispanic guests as well as our staff.
By the way, we had 1735 visitors at the museum on Saturday. So much for our critics who falsely claim the museum is struggling with attendance! They also claim that our future Ark Encounter can’t be sustained because the museum has supposedly not been successful. In fact, a representative for another ministry (and we won’t share its name) falsely claimed—for whatever reason—that the museum was “hemorrhaging” money! But each year we have exceeded our attendance and revenue projections. Critics, for whatever their reasons, don’t want to see the museum and Ark succeed, so they make up stories.
Here are museum guests entering the main hall on Saturday:
And here are visitors who were lining up to go inside the museum’s walk-through:
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying, Ken