Latinos in America continue rising as a share of the overall population in the United States, but some Christian ministries are warning that only around 10 percent are born-again believers as a majority is becoming more secular.
"Only 10 percent of the Latino population in the U.S. are born-again Christians. And after reading the data, perhaps by 2050, this country could be a majority Latino country," said Esteban Fernandez, Biblica's area executive director of Latin America, on Wednesday.
Mission Network News noted that Fernandez was referring to earlier projections, though a September 2016 study by the Pew Research Center suggested that the Latino/Hispanic population growth has slowed in recent years.
Still, Fernandez warned that the low-percentage of born-again believers is bad news for America, as it means yet another group is "living without Christ."
"So we have a big job in front of Biblica and all the churches that care for Latinos in the U.S. They're 90 percent of a missionary field that needs to be reached," he said.
He noted that organizations like Biblica are urging churches to step out into the communities and reach people, but noted that more people need to take part in such efforts.
"Especially now that they are facing so many difficulties, go outside, and serve them, and show the Gospel in a practical manner. But to show, you also need to have a tool that can speak to their language," he added.
Fernandez recommended the Nueva Versión Internacional, which is the New International Version Bible in Spanish, as one of the main tools to engage with people.
"We the Latinos have another great opportunity — that is, once you get one family member you have the whole family," he said. "Once you get the father or the mother or one son, you get the whole family because we are very family oriented."
The religious make-up of the roughly 56.5 million Latinos in America, many of them originally from Roman Catholic backgrounds, has been the subject of much discussion and analysis.
Some, such as prominent Latino evangelical leader the Rev. Gabriel Salguero, have recently warned that Latino millennials increasingly become more secularized and leave religion when they assimilate into American culture.
"The longer Latinos are in the United States and the more Americanized they become, the more secularized they become," Salguero said in January at the 2018 Council for Christian Colleges and Universities International Forum in Grapevine, Texas.
"The fastest-growing group among millennials is the nones — the n-o-n-e-s."
Salguero also noted that the Hispanic population in the U.S. is expected to reach 119 million by the year 2060, which is changing the religious and ethnic landscape of the country.
"Here is the opportunity to have the conversation. Will we invest?" he positioned about reaching out to bilingual young Latinos.
"Will we have a five or 10-year plan? Not a drive-by ministry of 'Let's [just] have an event at your church and bring Latino pastors.
"Anything that is worth anything will cost us," he added.
Others, such as the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, have told The Christian Post that the Latino Church will save American Christianity.
"Faith catches fire is a declarative metaphor as it pertains to the Latino evangelical community in America," Rodriquez told CP in September 2017. "American Christian faith stands to be ignited by fire, and it's a fire of a community committed to Christ and Scripture."