When Betilda Vázquez Quiej, 64, came across the TikTok app, a social media platform that uses short videos, she was inspired to start a Bible study ministry. The grandmother of eight began sharing Bible verses and an encouraging message every day from her home in San Lucas Sacatepéquez, Guatemala.
Quiej quickly started gaining a large following. In just two years since she joined TikTok, she has amassed over 29,700 followers.
Its daily messages follow the theme “Do Not Be Afraid” and include “Faith of Jesus” Bible courses and other initiatives promoted by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. She recently highlighted the 10 Days of Prayer the world church follows at the start of each year.
TikTok surged in popularity at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in early 2020, and now was the perfect time for her to get started with the app, Quiej said.
“I was motivated to start with social media platforms because most people are connected and spend a lot of time, even during their productive times at work listening to messages on social media,” Quiej said. “They keep their phones next to them and make time to listen and watch videos, and so I realized the Holy Spirit can work through audio, through video.” This was motivation enough for Quiej to begin his ministry.
“One day I noticed I had over 1,000 followers, and I thought, ‘Well, they like what I’m doing,’ so I kept doing it, trying to improving every day,” Quiej said.
A Seventh-day Adventist since age 13 and originally from Nicaragua, Quiej is active at her San Bartolomé Milpas Altas Adventist Church in Guatemala, where she served as elder principal last year. She was recently reappointed as Elder and Treasurer.
Grandmother, business owner and active member
As a wife, mother, grandmother, and business owner, Quiej keeps busy during the day, beginning with personal devotional time. She also makes time for exercise, gardening and running her two beauty school shops. Every afternoon, she makes TikTok videos. She also posts on Facebook Live and recently opened an account on Instagram.
Quiej’s daily videos have gained her popularity as a Seventh-day Adventist TikTok grandmother in Guatemala who shares encouraging Bible messages every day.
She studies the best time to post her videos on the TikTok app every day, takes the time to answer the questions her followers send her, and tries to ignore or block the occasional hate messages she receives.
A very personal ministry
“It’s become a very personal ministry for me,” Quiej said. What she loves most is that she has found purpose in sharing biblical promises. His followers are based in many different countries, including Argentina, Bolivia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, and the United States.
Quiej shared that she received many questions from hundreds of people. “I may not know the answer to all the questions, but the Bible does, and it has all the answers,” she said.
“I see this as such an important ministry because we have to preach this [gospel] message around the world, and I believe that is exactly what I am doing, preaching in Europe, Asia, America and the rest of the world. I want Jesus to come, and I want to use every opportunity I can to that end,” Quiej said.
No limit to the preaching of the Word of God
Quiej said she was blessed every day she shared on TikTok – 365 days a year. “I love it on social media, that there is no limit to preaching the Word of God.” She dreams of being surprised by the people she has touched with the Bible’s message in her ministry when she gets to heaven.
She had ups and downs in her life. She left the church for two years and returned to the Lord, was rebaptized and clung to Jesus ever since. When Quiej reflects on how God has helped her in this ministry, she is grateful.
Quiej and her husband, Moisés, have been married for 48 years. She has lived in Guatemala since their marriage. Their three children live in the same town and are active in their local church.
“When I started using social media I was like a chicken pecking corn, with my fingers, but now I’m doing better, and that’s enough for my ministry,” she said. It wasn’t easy, but she loves technology and continues to learn how ever-changing and dynamic it can be. She believes anyone can share the messages of love and hope found in the Bible through their mobile devices.
Quiej hopes to soon surpass 30,000 followers on TikTok and continue to grow his ministry. She will continue her ministry on Facebook and will soon start Bible studies on Instagram.
the original version of this story was published on the Inter-American Division news sites.