Meet Robbie Fuentes of Second Chance Street Ministry in Texas City Shared from http://voyagehouston.com
Today we’d like to introduce you to Robbie Fuentes.
Robbie, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I was raised in a dysfunctional home, with my mother and a stepdad. Stepdad ended up in prison and my mom was left to battle her own demons. That dysfunction left me wanting to join a gang to fill something I was missing; to fill that void I felt in my life. I ended up on the streets, staying with any of my homeboys that I could stay with. At the age of 11 to 12, I ended up shooting a boy from another gang and the following year I shot a childhood friend and ended up in TYC (Texas Youth Correctional). It didn’t stop there; as I got older, the crimes got worse. I started selling drugs to make a living. The end result was getting everyone around me strung out with the drugs I was selling. I sold to family members, kids, and mothers, and I had no remorse or any feelings about what I was doing. I ended up getting locked up in the state of Louisiana. You would have thought that getting locked up and being away from all my family, it would open my eyes, but it did not. I came home from being incarcerated in Louisiana to the same environment and went back to selling drugs. My behavior caused me to lose my boys to CPS (Child Protective Services) and they ended up in foster care for a year and a half. This hit me like a ton of bricks; I knew I had to get them back and I had to stop doing the things I was doing. I’ve never felt like I had been good at anything, but I knew I could sell drugs and hurting people. I never educated my mind or knew of any talents I could have. I remember falling on my knees crying out to the Lord, while holding a 45 in my hand, putting the muzzle of the gun in my mouth, wanting to end it. I felt like there was no way out.
God had a different plan for me. I attended this church in Texas City, TX, called The Fellowship. The first time that I walked in, I sat in the back row closest to the door so I could leave in a hurry. I kept showing up and God kept giving me the strength and the encouragement to stop all the old things. This walk with the Lord has not been easy by any means. I keep my faithfulness and he continues to bring me through every storm that comes my way. As the Lord was molding me, he put in my heart to start a MInistry for boys. God informed me that everything that I’ve been through in my life, I would show these boys a different way and teach them the love of Christ and teach them what the Lord has done for me. I resisted, I was like “nope, I’m not your man for this,” and I would push the thought to the back of my mind, but the Lord was consistent on reminding me what he wanted me to do.
I started seeking the Lord wholeheartedly; anytime the doors of the church were open, I was there wanting to help or get involved. I got my boys back after a year and a half of being away from them; “Glory to God.” It’s been six years and I’m still at The Fellowship Church, and I’m now the director of one of the departments in the church and a church leader. The ministry I found, The Second Chance Street Ministry has approximately 25 boys. I remember telling God at one point in time, that if I was going to be blessed with this ministry, I would feed the kids. I remember being on the streets being hungry, having to steal from grocery stores to feed myself. Today, we feed 25 to 30 kids every Thursday evening and at the same time, teach them the love of Christ. I was never taught how to love or to be a man, thankfully God has shown me what I know today and as their mentor, my goal is to divert them from going down the road, I traveled. With God on our side, how can we lose? Thank you, Lord, for second chances.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
There have been struggles along the way. Learning to trust God, even when I didn’t see it. Learning that the storms I go through are for learning lessons.
Second Chance Street Ministry – what should we know? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Second Chance Street Ministry is a faith-based group that reaches out to kids between the ages 7 to 16 years of age. Running towards the world and needing that extra love and guidance.
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success to me is being content with what I have known, I worked for it and it can’t be taken away from me. Peace of mind and great family and friends that want only the best for me and call me out when I slip up.