How a Young Adventist Couple Transformed Their Dream Trip to the Holy Land into Inspiration

Their visit is now a TV series on Hope Channel Inter-America.

Libna Stevens, Inter-American Division News
How a Young Adventist Couple Transformed Their Dream Trip to the Holy Land into Inspiration
Adventist social media influencers César Martínez and Gaby Chagolla’s dream of visiting the Holy Land resulted in a TV series on Hope Channel Inter-America. [Image: Leslie Torres/HCIA]

A young Seventh-day Adventist couple from Mexico found an appealing way of following in Jesus’ footsteps: by sharing their dream trip to the Holy Land through what has become a television series on Hope Channel Inter-America.

When César Martínez, 30, and Gaby Chagolla, 26, got married in 2019, they had one dream: to make the most of a honeymoon by traveling to the Holy Land in Israel to walk the same places where Jesus walked 2,000 years ago. When they found out they didn’t have enough funds for the honeymoon at that time, they settled into their jobs and building their savings.

Life got busy. The couple moved out of Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas, and started new jobs, which eventually allowed them to save. One night in 2021, as they studied the book of John with friends, César and Gaby felt inspired once more about visiting Jerusalem and its surrounding places. They felt it was an attainable dream, and they decided to put it in God’s hands.

“We knew that we didn’t want to just have a spiritual experience for ourselves but share it with others,” César said. They devised a plan. They would do the trip and post about it in Gaby’s YouTube channel Séptima Estación (Station 7). On that channel, she usually shares Bible verses, spiritual lessons, and positive messages pointing to heaven to her more than 30,000 followers. “I knew that there were many Christians who also had the dream of visiting Jerusalem, and we wanted to make sure the content could get to many people,” Gaby said.

César agreed. “As we kept praying for our dream, our lifestyle changed,” he said. “We began to save money, think differently about our spending, trusting God.”

After a year of saving every bit they could, they purchased their tickets. With the tickets secured, they began to do more research for their journey and come up with content to share. Pase de Abordar (Boarding Pass) was the name they came up with for their adventure in Jerusalem.

As they began to think of reaching people online, they thought, “Why not reach a larger audience?”

“We mentioned it to Hope Channel Inter-America leaders, and they liked the idea, and another dream was born — to produce a television series,” Gaby said. “Pase de Abordar was a dream, and God began moving things to make that dream a reality and take us to another level.”

In November 2022, they traveled to Jerusalem and recorded six episodes while visiting Galilee, Bethlehem, the Garden of Gethsemane, and other prominent places in the Bible. Pase de Abordar recently premiered on Hope Channel Inter-America, generating a lot of responses on the couple’s social media platforms.

“As we traveled, we shared with our social media audience every step of our journey, and the response from so many people really touched us,” Gaby said. “So many messages came from so many people praying for us and our project, even one year after making our trip and three years since we prayed for God’s guidance.”

Their travel experience included many outstanding moments. “There’s nothing more beautiful than to see the places where Jesus went and experience that confirmation of the historical evidence mentioned in the Bible,” César said. Seeing the Temple Mount in Jerusalem where Solomon’s temple was built was exciting to him. “It has been the greatest experience of my life. It’s no longer just a notion; on the contrary, it is based on what I saw for myself. My relationship with God has grown.”

For Gaby, welcoming the seventh-day Sabbath in front of the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem’s Old City and visiting the closest Seventh-day Adventist church is unforgettable. “We took part in a beautiful spiritual feast with praises on the Sabbath,” Gaby said. “Being embraced by so many women and praising together made me think of the beautiful future reunion in heaven.”

The response to Pase de Abordar has been a true blessing, Gaby said. “People have thanked us, have shared that they have watched every episode with their co-workers, friends and families, and have felt they experienced our journey into the Holy Land with us.”

Pase de Abordar is the first series that is a more practical, social, youth-oriented series on Hope Channel Inter-America, Abel Márquez, executive director of Hope Channel inter-America, said. “Generally, we feature more formal programs, mostly framed in a study with a script, and in this case, it’s the perspective of two young people visiting the Holy Land,” Márquez said. “They don’t assume that they are experts in biblical history but rather they want to experience the places where Jesus went through. We learn from their experience, because it is a couple eager to share the message of love and hope found in Jesus.”

Both are Christian influencers. César, who created La Biblia en Minecraft (The Minecraft Bible), serves as associate communication director in the Central Mexican Union (CMU) in Mexico City. Gaby, who created Séptima Estación with her sister and works as the CMU production assistant and social media manager, vowed to continue sharing the love of God in every way they can on social media platforms.

Now they have another dream: to come up with a second part to Pase de Abordar.

“When we put God in our dreams, when we choose Him as our sponsor, He takes us to fulfill that dream and turns it into something that you couldn’t imagine,” César said.

The original version of this story was posted on the Inter-American Division news site.

Libna Stevens, Inter-American Division News