SAN ANTONIO, TX (Sept. 28, 2016) – René Maciel, president of Baptist University of the Américas since 2007, has announced his resignation to accept the position of Community Life Pastor at First Baptist Church of Woodway in Waco, Texas, effective Oct. 16.

Maciel also serves as president of the Baptist General Convention of Texas, also known as Texas Baptists, and will preside over the annual convention from Nov. 13-15 in Waco. He represents two million members in 5,300 churches. He also serves as Associate Minister at First Baptist Church of Castroville.

BUA offers five bachelor’s degrees and one associate degree with an emphasis on preparing students to be Christian ministers in their religious careers as well as in secular careers.

During his tenure at BUA, enrollment has doubled and he led a move from eight outdated buildings at 8019 S. Pan Am Expressway to a renovated medical office building on Barlite Boulevard this fall.

Van Christian of Comanche, Texas, Chair of BUA’s Board of Trustees which will meet later this week to start the presidential search process, said, “The Board of Trustees is obviously saddened to receive President Maciel’s resignation; however, we also understand the significance of God’s call on his life. We are confident that just as God has prepared him for this change, He has also prepared someone to become the new president of BUA.

“Just as Joshua succeeded Moses in leading the Hebrew people into the promised land, we believe God already has a new leader selected to lead the BUA family into the new era inhabiting our new home. We are excited about the search for that person and confident that God will lead us to the person He has already prepared for the role.

“We are incredibly grateful for President Maciel and his leadership which has brought BUA to its current position, which we consider to be the best in its rich history.  The Trustees wish all God’s best on René and Sabrina as they begin this new position of God’s plan in their lives,” Christian added.

Paul Sands, lead pastor of the First Baptist Church of Woodway in Waco said, “We couldn’t be more excited to have René joining the staff at First Woodway. As the BUA community knows so well, René brings a wealth of experience, strong leadership, and infectious enthusiasm to everything he does. He will help First Woodway strengthen its outreach to the Waco community and beyond.

“From my conversations with René, I can tell you that his love for the staff, students, and supporters of BUA is undiminished. He has already suggested ways that First Woodway could forge a closer partnership with BUA as it prepares students for leadership in our state and region.  René’s visionary leadership at BUA has impressed people throughout Texas. We are thrilled to have him join us at First Woodway,” Sands said.

Prior to joining BUA, Maciel was the assistant dean at Truett Seminary in Waco. He also served atNew Mexico Baptist Children’s Home in Portales, N.M. and Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene.

Baptist University of the Américas, located at 7838 Barlite Blvd. in San Antonio, Texas, provides post-secondary education for students from all over the world. Students can earn certificates and college degrees not only to enter the formal ministry in churches but also to minister while serving in their secular careers.  More information is available at



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