Marco and Liza Garcia, founders and senior pastors of The Way World Outreach are driven by their absolute passion to touch lives and transform the world one soul at a time. Their hearts overflow with compassion for the lost, the hurting, the poor, and the broken. Fueled by this deep-seated empathy, they dream bigger and believe in God’s plan for his people and every individual they encounter.
His vision to build the church originated from God’s direction to walk the streets of San Bernardino, CA, where he saw the brokenness and pain in the city. From this realization of the need for Jesus to heal and restore, they set out on a mission rooted in love to help meet the needs of the community. Reflecting on their journey, Marco shares, “From the very first meal we handed out to a needy family to the more than 25,000 hot meals our church distributed last year, we have seen the impact of our efforts.” Their church has undergone significant growth, expanding to now two campuses in San Bernardino and over 7 campuses internationally including a church and orphanage in Kenya, Africa.
Their dedication extends beyond meals and services. Marco and Liza have overseen the launch of numerous homes for men, women, and children, offering them a path out of homelessness. Marco expresses, “Our aim is to get individuals and families off the streets every day.” Their impact goes further, as they have successfully initiated over 100 ministries that have dramatically and consistently influenced the local community.
To empower individuals on their spiritual journey, they developed a transformational discipleship curriculum. Marco shares, “Our curriculum has helped thousands to discover their destiny and purpose in God.” As a church, they continue to make disciples of Jesus Christ who, in turn, become agents of positive change.
Marco finds great significance in Proverbs 16:3 (NIV), which states, “Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” Reflecting on this verse, he shares, “This scripture embodies the core lesson I have learned about life and God. It reminds us to trust God wholeheartedly in every endeavor we undertake.”
Love and forgiveness are the cornerstones of their lives and ministry. Marco reflects on these virtues, stating, “To truly experience the abundant life that Jesus offers us, we must first accept His love and forgiveness. Then, we must extend that same love and forgiveness to ourselves and everyone we come across each day, even those who may be considered our enemies.”
In a world consumed by comparison and competition, Marco emphasizes the importance of embracing one’s unique identity. He encourages others, saying, “Don’t spend energy comparing yourself with others. Instead, focus on becoming the best version of yourself. Remember that you are God’s masterpiece, designed with unique talents and abilities for a specific purpose.”
Leadership and influence carry immense responsibility. Marco acknowledges this truth, stating, “Our influence can either lead people astray or guide them to reach their full potential. The greatest use of our influence is to connect people with the only one who can truly set them free, heal them, and give them eternal life: Jesus Christ.”
Marco and Liza leverage their influence and resources to make a positive impact on the world. Their ministry is tireless in its efforts to help the homeless find shelter, provide loving homes and education for orphans in Africa, and spread the life-giving message of Jesus Christ to thousands each week. Marco declares, “By using our influence in this way, we are fulfilling our responsibility as leaders and making a real difference in the lives of those around us.”
Their steadfast commitment to reach souls, extend love and forgiveness, and embrace their influence through their church The Way World Outreach has undoubtedly made a profound impact. Their zealous efforts to transform lives reflect their belief in God’s plan for their city and every individual they encounter.
This article feature is from our annual special edition issue, the L.A. STYLE Magazine Most Influential of 2023.