A Whole New World

Reigning from the small town of Brisenas, Mexico, Senora Meeks discovered her passion for students while integrating her Hispanic heritage into her teaching here in America.


Ellie Jones

Senra Meeks, standing in her classroom getting ready to begin classes.

Born in 1965, she was the last of seven children, with three brothers and three sisters. Both of her Catholic parents were full-time, and extremely hardworking, which left an abundance of responsibility on her older sister, Socoro, to care for the rest of the kids. Her mother owned a grocery store, while her father spent an amplitude of time working in California by virtue of his possession of a green card. Senora studied hard to earn her undergraduate biology degree from the University of Guadalajara, only then to acquire her master’s in health and environment in Pamplona, Spain.

“Even though I heard about God, I really didn’t have a close relationship with him. It wasn’t until I was in college that I got connected with a Protestant church. The preaching got my attention right from the start,” said Meeks. Being born into a religious home does not automatically guarantee a meaningful relationship with Christ, which many can attest to. She explains how God was shown through the message that day, calling her to become involved with a youth group at her home church in Mexico. This powerful group traveled internationally to Spain, as well as Illinois to spread the word through a missions conference. 

Despite her love for the Lord, she has also overcome traumatic obstacles thus far. In 2001, shortly after the terrorist attack in New York City, Senora Meeks’ husband sadly passed away. On top of this extreme hardship, she moved to the states right after, in a culture she was not familiar with in any way. 

“I not only had to go through the process of grieving for him, but also I had the responsibility of raising two little ones, ages 2 and 4, in a culture that wasn’t mine, with a language that was not my native one,” said Meeks. Throughout this distressing time, the Lord placed wonderful, loving individuals to walk alongside Senora and her children. This included her family from Mexico as well as her in-laws.

She has a son named Christian, and a daughter named Elizabeth. Both are Westminster graduates and moved on to living wonderful lives. Christian, born in Guadalajara, Mexico, is currently 24, and married to his high school sweetheart. He received a degree in English and Art from Saint Louis University. Elizabeth, born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, is 21 years old and currently resides at the University of Kansas studying interior and architecture.

“My husband always said that he was convinced that I should be a teacher, to which I always responded: ‘claro que no!’ I didn’t feel like it was my call,” said Meeks. However, shortly after moving here to St. Louis, she was quickly presented with the opportunity to teach Spanish at a grade school. She prayed and prayed asking that God retract the teaching offer, she was afraid, nevertheless, the Lord had a plan and she knew that. 

“Now I am super grateful that he didn’t close the door, and the contrary, he left it wide open for me. Even though it was very hard at first, it has been one of the greatest blessings I have ever had.” Nineteen years later, and in her eighth year at Westminster, Senora reveals her greatest love for teaching: her amazing students. Her favorite part is experiencing how two different cultures can be unified under God.