Adventist Church Opens Wellness Center in Mexico

The Seventh-day Adventist Church recently opened a wellness center, “Centro de Vida Sana Dr. Filiberto Verduzco Avila,” in Chiapas, Mexico. The new facility will offer natural remedies and preventative medicine focused on holistic health care for mind, body and spirit.

Dozens of administrators, leaders and members of local and national churches attended the inauguration ceremony in Tuxtla Gutiérrez on December 20, 2021.

“It’s a very special time to inaugurate a center like this,” said Ignacio Navarro, president of the Adventist Church in Chiapas. The center is owned by the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Mexico and the Inter-American Division (IAD), he said. “It is a missionary space in the city of Tuxtla Gutiérrez where God’s plan to restore his creation will be presented and the soon coming of Jesus will be announced.”

Navarro said the wellness center has three special characteristics: it bears the church’s trademark “I want to live in good health”, bears the name of Filiberto Verduzco, treasurer of the IAD, and it will be a place to serve anyone in Chiapas and all over the country. “I Want to Live Healthy” is a lifestyle initiative created by SAI that promotes eight natural remedies.

Verduzco, who attended the dedication, thanked church leaders from the union office and the eight local conferences for the honor. “God is the only one who can bring healing, and there will be many patients with sickness in their souls who will need special attention from the Master Physician,” Verduzco said. “My dear brothers and sisters, life is a gift from God, and we must teach good habits that can lead to a healthier lifestyle.”

Leaders chose to name the center after Verduzco for his inspirational leadership in fulfilling the mission of the church, Navarro explained.

Construction of the center began in 2018 as the church in Chiapas dedicated its health missionary initiatives and activities for that year.

The center will be able to care for 100 patients at a time and will be fully functional as soon as the remaining permits are finalized, church leaders said. The facility includes hydrotherapy pools, saunas, a gym, dining hall, nine patient rooms and suites, medical and administrative offices, a chapel, an outdoor auditorium, and a park.

Centro de Vida Sana Dr. Filiberto Verduzco Avila is the second wellness center connected to the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Mexico. Las Canoas Vida Sana has operated as a sanatorium for decades in Montemorelos, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, founded by Tomás Ramírez.

Park named after Tomás Ramírez

Ramírez, who is retired, was honored at the inauguration for his work as an educator in preventive medicine. He said he had always dreamed of seeing a wellness center in Chiapas. Church leaders unveiled a new park named after him outside the new center.

“In the 1970s, when I graduated from the National Autonomous University of Mexico, I wondered why drugs and antibiotics only cured symptoms but not diseases, and I asked God to show me the way to treat diseases in a more effective and cheaper way,” Ramírez says. “It was then that God brought me closer to the Adventist Church and I began to treat with plants and natural methods. I opened my own pharmacy in Tuxtla Gutiérrez, where I found so many medicinal plants, but the best discovery was the Word of God, and that is what heals,” he said. His son, Juan Ramírez, who works at the Las Canoas center, will also be medical director of the new center in Chiapas.

IAD President Elie Henry visited the center and commended the church and its leaders for building a beautiful center that represents God. “It’s a center for anyone who will need not just physical but also spiritual help,” Henry said. “This space will present the message that the Adventist Church cares about the well-being of people.”

Many church members said they were proud to see the new center completed.

“God is so great that through the faithfulness of the church he has allowed this beautiful installation,” said José Antonio Gómez, a member of Central Adventist Church in Tuxtla Gutiérrez.

Raúl Pérez Pimentel, an elder at the Adventist Church in Sochitlán, said it was wonderful to tour the new facilities. “It’s to honor the Lord and benefit so many people, and I want to tell my fellow church members that it’s really worth being faithful to the Lord.”

“We want everyone who visits this center to be surrounded by angels and for those who work here to feel that they are an instrument of salvation,” Navarro said.

the original version of this story was published on the Inter-American Division news sites.

Jerry B. Hatch