Marines participate in church’s goal to relieve Mathis

MATHIS, Texas — At Life Reach Fellowship in Mathis, it was a Sunday service that will set the tone for the rest of the year here. It’s their celebration of religion, America and what’s to come.

Life Reach Fellowship aims to show the people of Mathis that a bad situation can always be reversed.

To “achieve” lives if you will.

This was reflected on Sunday, with a donation from the United States Marine Corp. to create scholarships for seniors at Lycée Mathis.

“They can see that, we are not alone. If I need help, there is a place I can go and get help. If I need someone to listen to me, there is a place I can go to have someone listen to me,” said senior pastor Isaias Villarreal.

The Life Reach Fellowship has been around for about 10 years now and Villarreal have been trying to exemplify resilience from the start. He turned a condemned building into his church.

“I want this building to serve as a testament that the way we’ve transformed this building is how I want to work with people in our community, or surrounding communities, to change lives,” he said.

Since then, it’s been about finding ways to do it.

“It’s an honor for us to be able to see some of the children grow up and be raised in a state of poverty and rise up,” said Mathis Mayor Ciri Villarreal. “And to be able to come out of this state of poverty and be successful.

A recent church mission partnered with local agencies to support victims of drug addiction and human trafficking.

“We helped them with Sweet 16s and Quinceaneras,” Isaias said. “We are helping them as best we can to get back to normal life after something so difficult. And we are doing everything we can to protect them here.

Once money can be generated, there is future hope of establishing a tutoring center at the church.

The Marines’ donation will be $700, Isaias said. But people at the church believe this is just the beginning.

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