Recaps of church events.

Youth Rally a Big Success


The annual youth rally here at Gospel Light was a big success with nearly 300 people in attendance. There were many creative people working day and night to make it happen. Let me fill you in on some of the fun!

Upon arrival, you would have found our museum and it’s many artifacts. You may have even been greeted by Mr. Peculiar, our museum curator.


The artifacts on exhibit are  too many to mention, but some of them (all very peculiar) are pictured here. We had Boaz’s other shoe, Adam and Eve’s original ‘fig’ure flattering fig leaf garments, Moses’ broken tablets, Paul and Silas’ prison clothes and a snapshot of the Italian Band. Our museum is still available for viewing through mid May so come on in and check it out!

The museum

Moses' broken tablets

Moses’ broken tablets

The Italian Band



A few artifacts we dug up!


After visiting the museum, you would have ventured in to our sanctuary and found peculiar platform decor as well as  some rather peculiar clothing on our staff members. You just never know what this bunch is going to come up with.

Pastor G and Pastor Bard

Pastor G and Pastor Bard


Peculiar clothing!

Peculiar clothing!

One of the first activities of the night was to give away a pizza party to a youth group. Now, we couldn’t just hand it over…these things must be earned! In order to do that, one of our best cooks, Chef Wannabe, had some tasty treats for six youth leaders to try out. If you have never tasted chocolate covered crickets or the tongue of a yak, you wouldn’t know what you are missing! The highlight though, would have to be the McDonald’s happy meal (blended up in the blender, coke, fries and all….) Sadly, most of our contestants were not too keen on drinking it down, but the winner of the pizza party was a real sport. Pastor Dave Karpenko downed that drink as though it might have even tasted good! EWWW! What a good sport though!

Chef Wan A Be

Chef Wan A Be


On to better things. We had a very thought provoking skit, “Who’s your Daddy?”  that was funny, but would leave the viewer pondering his or her own salvation and walk with the Lord. Part two of the skit “The Christian Journey” was later in the evening. It is our prayer and hope that those in attendance will not soon forget what they saw and heard.

Who is your Daddy?  Mr. DeVille? or Mr. Gooood?

Who is your Daddy?
Mr. DeVille? or Mr. Gooood?


After some really good special music, our preachers took their turns.

The DG's.

The DG’s.


Ladies Trio

Ladies Trio



Brother Jeff Harris preached a message titled ‘What is your Battle?’ He reminded us of David and the giant that he faced. Stressing that we all have a giant in our life. That sin will lead to destruction if we allow it to. He went on to Solomon and his giant being lust and desire, causing him to follow after false Gods, and watering down his desire to serve God.  Lastly he spoke of  Rehoboam who was not willing to listen to the wisdom of his elders but chose to follow the advice of his peers. This was his downfall. I highly recommend listening to the messages that were preached  here.

Bro. Jeff Harris

Bro. Jeff Harris


Our keynote preacher was Evangelist Greg Pritchard. He very aptly reminded us that if God is not before us, in our thoughts, in our mind, the Word of God read daily, our actions being that of people who want to please Him, we will not be able to make right choices. Our life will be lived in vain. God must be in front! We must be willing to be peculiar for His glory. NOT weird. Peculiar. A few definitions of the word are: set apart, different from the usual, distinct from all others,  distinctive in nature or character from others. A great reminder of who we should be in Christ.

Evangelist Greg Pritchard

Evangelist Greg Pritchard


After giving away a final prize, (Kindle) we wound up the night with box lunches containing some of the best brownies you could ever want to bite into and a final skit from Mrs. Shirley Jenkins! That woman can sure clean things up!


The Winner of a Kindle

The Winner of a Kindle


Mrs. Jenkins

Mrs. Jenkins


As we make plans for next year, we look forward to seeing the Lord show up and move in the hearts of young and old alike. Make plans to attend!




April 18, 2014.

Save the date! 

Victory for Troubled Youth

Mommies can’t be daddies, and daddies can’t be mommies, children need both!”, proclaimed Brother Ralph Stokes to the Sunday evening crowd at Gospel Light. Brother Stokes is canvasing local churches for the purpose of encouraging ministry to troubled youth. “Victory for Troubled Youth” is the name of his mission to the juvenile delinquents of America. He has been preaching to kids since 1995, starting in his home state of Alabama. His concern locally is the Industry School in Rush.

We were presented with a short video presentation of the sad story of juvenile detention centers. Brother Stokes hit the nail on the head when he stated that “the problem isn’t the kids, the problem is the home.” His ministry aims to put a King James Bible into the hands of every boy and girl, where hopefully the Word will reach their hearts. Brother Stokes preached out of the books of Joshua and Judges, encouraging saved Christians to choose to hear God’s voice and get busy doing His will. He reminded that will be judged not for what we did, but why we did those things. The evening ended with a question and answer period where we learned more about what these troubled youth face in their lives.

Report From A Missionary

Dr. Doug Whiteside was visiting GLBBC this past Sunday night to speak on his new church planting, called the Fort Dix Project. Called the Ambassador Baptist Church, we watched a slide presentation of the stages in of the church building being refurbished from what used to be a Payless shoe store and a pet shop. Because of the unexpected help and donations that supported the creation of this church, Dr. Whiteside called it the “Lord’s doing”. “This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvellous in our eyes” Psalms 118:23. Saved in 1961, Dr. Whiteside has ministered to troops in Korea, Russia, Phillipines, Romania, Liberia, and South Africa for Globe Span Ministries. He left brochures for people who may be interested. We were asked to pray for the declining health of Dr. Whiteside’s wife, Carol, who entered hospice this past Saturday.

GLBBC Baseball

GLBBC BASEBALL by Darryl Marcoux

Psalm 133:1  “A Song of degrees of David. Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!

It was a bright beautiful spring day that started out door knocking with a team of 16 faithful members including our Pastor. One person was saved because of this effort! We started at noon and went until two in the afternoon. When all returned to church we broke out the mitts and a few softballs to warm up. When we were all set we started a caravan to Hamlin where we were to meet Walker Bible Baptist. “I think they are afraid to come to us to host the game?” On the way there we encountered a little rain on our windshields. It doesn’t look good for our game so far from home! As it turned out overcast was in our forcast as well as high winds; normal for Hamlin. The cheering section had half a dozen GLBBC’s and one little girl from Walker. We had the crowd support.

Mark Bennett opened us in prayer before we took the field. Our team was at bat first and we took a demanding 4 run lead. Then Walker came to bat and stole our lead by one. It was an epic battle back and forth for the rest of the game with plenty of antics in between. We had two GLBBC women on our team but Walker were afraid of our women and did not want us to play them even though they had an extra player over us. At the third inning we got our women in with Jessenia C. at first base and Leah K. at second base. Both were tremendous in the field and both could slam the ball at the plate. Jess went six for six and Leah only once drove the ball back to the pitcher for an out. I’m sure  he cradled his hand for some time after catching that ball. Both girls crossed the plate each time they got on base! GO GIRLS. Anyways we must have played twenty innings through and through but I can’t tell you who won the game. We have no recorded account of the score and I thought GLBBC won by at least three runs but there is a dispute where some say Walker beat us 32 to 20. At the end of the game we all shook hands and congratulated each other for a fine game. Then brother Mark Bennett closed us in a beautiful prayer and agreed to another game on May 12th 2012. We love you Walker and look forward to the next game. These are real fun games because we include the Lord before we start playing. So plan on coming out May 12th to support your team! Possible weenie roast after the game at the Bennett’s residence?

Pastor’s Recap of the Men’s Prayer Breakfast

Dear Brethren,

The 100 men that attended this morning’s Men’s Prayer Breakfast at Gospel Light experienced the unity of the faith (Eph 4:13)!

15 pastors, evangelists, missionaries received a $25.00 gas card to take the sting out of “taking a ride” to this event. We also gave out $5 gifts cards to those that texted me that were coming… ‘easy money’ …in a economical down-turn-time! Pastor Joe Perticone (Trinity Baptist Church) brought his men in the middle of their Mission’s Conference this morning along with his guest preacher Evangelist Ronnie Morrison (All Point Baptist Mission)…. that’s the spirit Pastor Joe Perticone!

Bro. Mateo Vasquez led us men in spirited hymns and the special music from the Gospel Light men’s group (plus Evangelist Tony Saxton) and Pastor Steve Baer and his sons, Jason & David (Calvary Bible Baptist Church) got the men settled in for the sermon.

Pastor Vince Massa sermon out of Exodus was a hit….out of the park….WOW! A full altar and a “valley of decision” for many of us. The Lord will indeed get some mileage out of this one.

As announced we took an offering for Pastor Mike Stout (Grace Baptist Church, Groton). Pastor Scott Strobel (First Bible Baptist Church, Lockport), and Pastor Nate Gipp (Emmanuel Baptist Bible Church) prayed for several needs as we finished up today’s Men’s Prayer Breakfast.

The spirit of unity amongst many churches was so edifying and encouraging. There is no reason why our region won’t experience some impact from this gathering.

It has been my prayer and heartfelt love of men gathering without pretense to see the Lord speak, us to listen and IGNITE us to IMPACT our families and churches. Once again I’m humbled and honored to have anyone come and partake!

Here’s a sampling of responses from my e-mail I sent out last Saturday:

  • Pastor Dickson Beam (Grace Baptist Church, Medina) writes in a text message: Hey Brother-ur email about YA (Youth Ablaze) was GREAT. I am believing God 4 a great break thru in the breakthru department!
  • Bro. Mark Luce, Youth pastor (Walker Bible Baptist Church, Walker): Well said Preacher!!!! “Charity…rejoiceth in the truth”, RIGHT???? Plan on joining “ye all” on Sat……Appreciate you!!!! GLORY to GOD!!!
  • Evangelist Bill Matthews (Rock of Ages Prison Ministries): AMEN & AMEN!!! I couldn’t have said it better myself. Unfortunately some don’t come because THEY aren’t in control of such events.

Regarding today’s Men’s Prayer Breakfast… this could be the very thing to keep a saved man going for the Lord! Philemon 1:20 “Yea, brother, let me have joy of thee in the Lord: refresh my bowels in the Lord.”

A lover of good men, Bro. Vince Giardino


This past weekend there were quite a few things going on, but one of them was the Kings Kids first HOBO DAY!
So we whipped up a little video for those of you who were not able to see some of these kids and their hilarious outfits.
Click the link below.

Video Samples from the Debate at Gospel Light

From a vantage point of sitting in the pews, video portions of the “Fight at Gospel Light” were recorded on camera. Here are a few of those videos. If you missed this debate of Bible Baptists vs Calvinism, then the videos will help give you an idea of what it was like.

However, Michael Giardino and his video crew have created a professional grade video of the entire debate which will be available in the very near future! The videos presented here are just a small sampling and we at Gospel Light highly recommend viewing the entire debate.

Dr. Sam Gipp highlights the Men’s Prayer Breakfast

Men’s Prayer Breakfast was held this morning at Gospel Light as a warmup to the “Fight at Gospel Light”, the great debate. Our guests were fed breakfast, and after the service, were fed lunch by a Gospel Light crew led by master chef Jeremiah Rodell.

Some of the best music ever heard at GLBBC came from performers Grayson Krol, Mike Walters, and Jim Donath of Old Time Baptist Church. Perhaps Mike Giardino might have the music recorded, because what I blessing it would be to take home a copy. Speaking of must-have recordings, the Friday night sermons by Dr. Sam Gipp and Baptist Historian Jeff Faggart were highly recommended by our Pastor Vince Giardino and a DVD is available for $3.00.

Below is the beginning portion of Dr. Sam Gipp’s morning charge at the Men’s Prayer Breakfast. Sam Gipp has been a featured speaker during this week’s Bible Conference and will be preaching again this Sunday evening at 7PM. Please excuse the shakiness of the video since it was recorded using a camera. As always, the church video crew, led by Michael Giardino, records just about every event at Gospel Light. Thus, this sermon will most likely be available upon request on DVD for those who are interested.

Gospel Light Bible Conference: 1st Night

Friday night (June 10) at Gospel Light will feature both Jeff Faggart and Sam Gipp, who will emphasize the King James Bible in their preaching.

Photos of the Baptist History Tour visit to GLBBC

This past week Pastor Vince Giardino and his son Ross went on the 2011 Baptist History Tour. This yearly event is hosted by Brother Jeff Faggart and Baptist History Preservation Society. They arranged to visit our church this past Wednesday evening and Bro. Faggart was invited to preach. Roberto C., an aspiring young photographer, borrowed his father’s camera and snapped off a series of photos of the tour’s visit. Please take the time to view them at the “Gospel Light Photographs” page on the church web site:

A Visit to the Public Market

A contingent of 25 men, women and children from Gospel Light set out this Saturday morning to the Rochester Public Market. We were able to distribute over 600 bible tracks and chat with many shoppers and vendors, spreading the seeds of God’s Word. Joy B. had a chance to snap a few photos and here are a few. Michael G. was busy recording video, so stay tuned for his next mini-movie (on the church web site’s Media page and the church Vimeo page).The next church foray is planned for May 21. See Gabriel G. for details.

Are You Ready For Departure?

This blogger can’t help but be proud of my church family at Gospel Light Bible Baptist Church after all they did to prepare and perform before and during the Youth Rally this Friday evening. By the grace of God and through the vision and planning of those who served, this event was a monumental success.Gospel Light would like to thank all our many guests for attending. We saw folks from: Bible Believers Baptist (Corry PA), Old Paths Bible Baptist, Chili Bible Baptist, Walker Bible Baptist, Trinity Baptist, Calvary Bible Baptist (Elbridge NY), Sampranius Baptist (Moravia NY), First Bible Baptist (Lockport NY), Grace Baptist (Medina NY), Lighthouse Bible Baptist, First Assembly of God, First Bible Baptist (Lancaster NY) and other bible believing churches. Our guests were subjected to airport security screening prior to admittance, in keeping with our event’s theme, “Preparing For Departure”. Each was given a raffle ticket and a song book. The ladies of Gospel Light were dressed up as airline stewardesses and Pastor Vince Giardino was decked out handsomely in a captain’s outfit, complete with cap and pilot wings. “Welcome to Flight 1611”, Pastor greeted his guests. As a backdrop behind the pulpit was a 7 foot wall of luggage. As guests settled into their seats, the background sounds of an airport could be heard through the sound system, enhancing the atmosphere.

The lights were lowered and the stewardesses took their places in the aisles. “Thank you for choosing Northwind Airlines” came over the speakers. Safety instructions were demonstrated by the stewardesses, complete with bible verses and singing. “Flight attendants please prepare for takeoff” was heard, followed by the roaring sound of takeoff.

With the lights still dark, a video presentation was show on the main screen and the many monitors placed around the building. We saw the Bard family at home and poor Peter first losing a video game to his daughter and then losing his cell phone. He then accidentally oversleeps and rushes to get to the Youth Rally on time. His car won’t start, so he hops on a kid’s bicycle and heads down the road. He is met by a hillbilly (played by Grayson K.) named “Willie” in a pickup truck, who gives him a ride. We then see Peter arrive at church, instantly change into a pilot’s outfit, and miraculously, he ran up on stage in real life! Brother Peter Bard is the beloved youth pastor here at Gospel Light.

Peter B. played the part of M.C. for the Rally. After giving a run down of the coming events for the evening, he introduce Pastor Vince Giardino, who provided the opening prayer. Then, with the help of the stewardesses in the aisles using hand gestures, we all sang “ I’ve Got Joy Down In My Heart” with enthusiasm for God. Following the song, a funny and confused old lady (played by Brenda D.) in a colorful hat and a southern accent came onto the stage from behind the luggage, giving Peter more than he could handle. She meandered down the steps and began to toss handfuls of candy into the delighted congregation.

The song leader for Gospel Light, Mateo V., led us in singing 3 hymns from our song books. Our first music special for the evening was from the harmonic quartet of Lori, Michael, Julia, and Ross G., who sang “Living On Higher Ground”. Pastor Giardino had the pastors from each of the churches in attendance stand up and introduce themselves, which brought loud cheers from their church members.

The first game of the evening, “Are You Smarter Than A Teenager”, was hosted by Kevin S. The youth pastors in the crowd were asked to come on stage to compete. Bible questions were given to pairs of pastors, the loser being eliminated. To much hooting and hollering, a winner was determined and given a small prize. And then came the confused old lady again, down the aisle saying “I’m getting the word”. She had a security guard’s headset on; Joe C. came running to collect his absconded equipment. This was followed by the first of the raffle drawings. Six numbers were drawn by Peter B. throughout the evening and each winner given a gift card. Another music special followed, this one by another talented quartet. Lori G., Bonnie V., Jaime S., and Melody C. sang “Are You Ready For The Call”.

Our original 15 minute preacher called in sick, so we welcomed Phil Huber, senior pastor at Walker BBC, to the pulpit. His message was based on Luke 11:14-23, where people were finding fault with Jesus. After admitting to being a Yankee fan, Brother Huber said, “There comes a time in your life where you have to pick which team you are on.” Some people will find fault in the church. These are Christians that can’t decide which team they are on. However, Bro. Huber submitted that there is “no walking the middle ground.” “Pick your team”, he said, “Decide which team you are on and fight for it … stand for your church.” For those brought up on the bible, he chastised by saying, “What is our excuse for not taking a stand for the Lord’s side.” Bro. Huber warned of the consequences of making the wrong choice, which he likened to standing at the wrong gate at an airport. He said that, for some of us, the final call may be imminent and “we ought to be on the right plane.” He said to consider what gate you are at, and if you see it is the wrong gate, then get to the right gate to heaven. At the conclusion of the message, Pastor Giardino invited us to come forward to the alter as he built on what Bro. Huber had said. Brother Tony Shirley was asked to sing at the piano while people came to pray.

Peter then began the first round of Bible Sword Drill questions. The game score was tallied on a giant scoreboard on the wall at the right of the alter. Church names were lifted by stings to the height matching their score. All in the congregation were quite familiar with the game and most participated with their “swords”, the Word of God. Kevin went around with a box of candy bars and winners were allowed to chose one.

Eleven men, old and young, from Gospel Light made up a chorus that came forward to sing “I’ll Fly Away”. Grayson accompanied on his banjo and the singing was spirited, both with the men and in the congregation. And once again came the confused old lady to entertain, this time with Brother Shirley on stage. Using a hand flicking motion, they discussed how to shout “shore”, Bro. Shirley’s way of saying “sure”. The old lady thought it would be a good idea to hold something in your hand while flicking and suggested Bro. Shirley use his handkerchief. She used her hat, but snatched off her wig also, exposing the hairnet underneath.

Kevin was back on stage for another game, this time inviting 1 or 2 teenagers from each church to come on up. He passed out bubble gum to each contestant and said “start chomping”. The goal was to blow the biggest bubble. After a slow start, several were able to manage a bubble, winners were determined and prizes given. The winning churches were given points on the scoreboard. Another round of sword drills was hosted by Peter, and at this middle point, Walker BBC led with 8000 pts and Old Paths BBC was 2nd with 6000 pts.

The lights were turned down and our eyes were drawn forward to a skit performed by Julia G. and Derek M. Each had a different approach to getting ready for an upcoming trip. Julia prepared thoughtfully and prudently. Derek was distracted by other things. When time came to depart, Julia was organized and happy. Derek found trouble. Julia said, “I’m so glad I was ready for departure.” Derek saw his flight leave without him.

The final game of the evening saw Kevin asking for items from the congregation. The first person to produce the item scored points for their church. The items were: paperclip, nail clipper, $20 bill, silver gum wrapper, 1980 quarter, pocket lint, green highlighter, tooth brush or paste, and hairbrush. This gave us our final scores. Walker BBC was the 1st place winner and a $50 gift certificate was given to the youth pastor. Lighthouse BBC was 3rd, winning $25, with Gospel Light coming in 2nd.

Pastor Giardino introduced our featured preacher for the evening, Brother Tony Shirley, pastor at New Manna Baptist Church in Marion, NC. Stepping up to the piano, Brother Shirley sang “Jesus Never Fails” and “He’s Been There”. Then stepping to the pulpit, he found a few items that amused him: a “whacking stick” (Mateo’s conducting wand) and a “half sucked cough drop”, which reminded him of a story. His story was about a man who ate peanuts, only to find they previously had the chocolate sucked off. Bro. Shirley said the thing about Youth Rally’s is that you can tell gross stories. So he told two more. The first being about the rough flight into Rochester and a boy 2 rows back vomiting. A young girl struggling not to do the same despite the sounds and smell said “This is not happening”. Brother Shirley thought, “If she goes, we all go … it would have been like a horror movie.” His second story was even funnier and more gross and involved a dead mouse at the bottom of a soup bowl … enough said.

In keeping with the theme of the evening, Brother Shirley chose 2 Tim 4:6-8 to base his sermon on. The Apostle Paul wrote, “For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand” 2 Tim 4:6. Paul had been preparing for his departure for a long time. Bro. Shirley asked a series of questions about our own departures:

  • Where are we going? Heaven, a place where there will be no more sin or sorrow.
  • How are we going? Either by death or by the rapture.
  • When are we going? The exact departure time is unknown, but is “at hand” as Paul said. “None of us know if we are going to make it home tonight”, Bro. Shirley reminded.
  • What are going to be the signs? The disciples of Jesus asked him what signs there would be (Luke 21:7). Jesus said there would be “distress of nations” Luke 21:25. A graphic was shown on the church video screens showing Tunisia, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, and Yemen, middle east countries currently in turmoil. Jesus also spoke of “the sea and the waves roaring” Luke 21:25. The next few graphics shown were of the huge waves, the recent tsunami that destroyed the Japanese coast. Jesus also said that knowledge would increase; “it’s going through the roof”, Bro. Shirley remarked. Jesus was letting us know of when the time of departure was imminent.

Brother Shirley asked the congregation, “Are You Prepared?

Reservation “The first thing you do is get a ticket”, Bro. Shirley counseled. Even before you pack your clothes, before you do anything else, you must have your seat reserved. Our ticket is being “born again”, he said. “Jesus paid for the ticket … but it doesn’t mean everyone will go … not everyone has received his ticket”, he continued. Brother Shirley warned that, “If you’ve never prayed yourself and asked Jesus into your heart, you are not saved.” If we cannot remember the date we were saved, we should at least be able to remember the moment in detail. Then we can be assured of a reserved seat for the flight to heaven.

Inspection In 2 Tim 4, Paul knew he was ready; he had perfect peace. He knew he’d be with Jesus when he died. Bro. Shirley asked, “Can you say like Paul ‘I’m ready’?” Further he asked, “Would you be willing to face Jesus with the life you’ve led in the past two weeks?” There is an inspection we will face. Bro. Shirley had Mateo come up with him, and with a hand-held security metal detector, did a spiritual scan of Mateo. “What if Jesus were to inspect you tonight?”, he asked:

  • Where have those feet been taking you? “It breaks Jesus’ heart if you have been going where you shouldn’t”, Brother Shirley remarked.
  • What have those hands been doing? Would the scanner go off if over what you have been touching, or what you have been texting, or what you have been doing?
  • What is it that your heart really loves? Are their things we love a little bit more than Jesus, such as sports? We should not want to grieve Jesus.
  • Would the alarm go off around your head? What have we been looking at or listening to? With regard to music, Bro. Shirley reminded that “fools make a mock of sin.” What have our lips have been saying?

“Will you be OK with how you’ve been running the race if you have to stand before Jesus tonight?”, Brother Shirley asked as a followup. “The good news is that we can get rid of the junk from our lives and put it into the basket of grace.” The invitation to come forward was made, and so many came to the alter, that there was hardly room for us all. Brother and sister Michael and Julia G. softly sang “Amazing Grace” as Michael played piano. “We are in the valley of decision right now”, Pastor Giardino said, continuing the invitation, “Let’s get ready for departure.” Brother Peter Bard came to the pulpit with the names of those who made professions of faith. At least 8 names were given!!!

To the surprise and delight of the congregation, boxed lunches were delivered to all present by the stewardesses. Using carts, they went down the aisles passing out the boxes (containing a sandwich, chips, cookies, and a coupon to Clubhouse Fun Center) and cans of soda. One box contained a golden ticket, which was retrieved by Elizabeth B. of Old Paths, winning her a 12 mega-pixal camera! Finally, Brother Scott Strobel, pastor at First Bible Baptist Church in Lockport NY, dismissed us in prayer. Animated and uplifting fellowship ensued as a successful evening slowly wound down.

Two believers in Christ were baptized

At Gospel Light this past Sunday evening, Pastor Vince Giardino had the privilege of baptizing two believers in Christ, Samantha C. and Benjamin R. This blog was blessed with access to the photos that were taken and we are presenting them to you now:

For those who have been saved by trusting Christ for salvation and are now thinking about being baptized, please speak with Pastor Giardino about participating in one of his baptism classes. You will learn why we are baptized and the true meaning of scriptural baptism.

Photos of the House-2-House Blitz

This morning, on a cold, but sunny spring morning in March, members of Gospel Light Bible Baptist Church set out into the neighborhoods of Gates to spread the Gospel of Christ. The House-2-House Ministry, led by Gabriel G. and Steve D., conducted a Blitz to kick of a season of reaching out to the lost in Monroe county with the good news.

A very encouraging number of us gathered together for hymns, prayers, and instructions. Teams and car pools were organized and several streets canvased. But rather provide all the details in words, a picture album has been created on the GLLBC web site. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. Please click on the photo below to head on over to the Gospel Light Photograph album. We hope the photos will encourage you to join in the H2H efforts to save souls.

Gospel Light Photographs

Photographs of the Men’s Prayer Breakfast

If you were in attendance at the Men’s Prayer Breakfast on Saturday, March 5th, you will no doubt have seen Bernie and Josh snapping pictures with a digital camera. We’ve had time to put a handful of them up on the GLBBC web site’s Photo album. Click on the photo of Brother Vince Massa below to have a gander at them.

Prayer Breakfast: “Making a Plow Boy into a Preacher”

Well, that was a powerful Men’s Prayer Breakfast I just got back from. 105 men were in attendance at Gospel Light Bible Baptist Church for fellowship, preaching and prayer, this blessed morning, Saturday, March 5th, 2011.

First came a buffet breakfast featuring french toast, a fruity cream cheese topping, cheesy potato casserole, sausage, bacon, and a variety of fruits. Thanks go to our chefs Jeremiah and Benjamin.

Loud and enthusiastic singing of hymns was lead by Gospel Light song leader Mateo. The music special for the morning was a Men’s Quartet. Our own Mike W., Jeremiah, and Mateo, were joined by the booming bass voice of Pastor Tony Saxton of Charity Bible Baptist Church. With incredible harmony, they sang, “He Didn’t Come Down”. Before they could put down their microphones, they were asked to do an encore.

Pastors and Associate Pastors in attendance were instructed to come forward and introduce themselves. Each was given a $25 Hess gas card as a token of appreciation for being here and to help defray the cost of travel to the event.Brother Jose Rosenbaum was invited to come forward to provide an update on his church planting, which was what men from last years’ Prayer Breakfast helped canvas for. Although a building has yet to be found for worship, a home bible study will begin in April. We were asked to pray for Brother Rosenbaum’s vision for the future. (Brother Massa would later joke that you would have to be from New York to have a name like Jose Rosenbaum.)Pastor Vince Giardino encouraged all the men present to be a blessing and supportive of their “men of God”. He spoke of the relentless attacks on pastors, their wives, and their families. In introducing Pastor Vince Massa, our preacher for the morning, Pastor G. asked, “How many have not heard Brother Massa preach?” After a sprinkling of hands went up, he said, “Well, fasten your seat belts.” We were to soon find out why.After hearing the superb and inspiring singing of the quartet, Brother Vince Massa suggested that they should be out on a downtown corner singing for the Lord. Then he entertained us with a couple of funny stories:

  • An elderly couple were driving across the country. The woman was driving when she got pulled over by the highway patrol. The officer said, “Ma’am did you know you were speeding?” The woman, hard of hearing, turned to her husband and asked, “What did he say?” The old man yelled, “He says you were speeding!” The patrolman said, “May I see your license?” The woman turned to her husband once again and asked, “What did he say?” The old man yelled, “He wants to see your license!” The woman gave the officer her license. The patrolman then said, “I see you are from Arkansas. I spent some time there once and went on a blind date with the most ill-tempered and quarrelsome woman I’ve ever met.” The woman turned to her husband and asked, “What did he say?” The old man yells, “He said he thinks he probably met you before!”
  • A preacher, doctor and a lawyer went hunting. As soon as they entered the woods a big buck jumped in front of them and all three shot. The buck fell dead and all three began arguing over who shot the deer. A game warden came along and heard the commotion. He volunteered his expertise to determine which one scored the trophy. After his examination, he announced his finding, “The preacher killed the deer.” The doctor and the lawyer wanted to know how he could determine this so quickly. The warden responded, “Easy, the bullet went in one ear and out the other!”

Brother Massa read from 1 Kings 19:19-21 and then prayed for God’s will to be done here today. His sermon was about Making a Plow Boy into a Preacher, the plow boy being Elisha (see v19). In chapter 19 of 1 Kings, God commands the prophet Elijah to return to Damascus, find Elisha, and anoint him to be a “prophet in thy room”. Elijah had to travel over 300 miles to do God’s will, Brother Massa pointed out. Likewise, if we get far from God, it will take more than a day to get right with God.

Elisha, after the mantle was passed to him, knew that God had called him and he “burned his bridges”, not looking back. Thus, just as Elisha understood God’s message, Brother Massa emphasized very strongly that we need to recognize what God is calling us to do in our lives. (Side note – Brother Massa would make a wonderful Drill Sargent.) “If you really got the message, you will follow … because that’s what you got called to do … and it is not dependent on a pat on the back.” Once called to do God’s work, we too must not look back, burning our bridges to our old lives.

  • The Prophet’s Call – Once the mantle had been “cast upon him”, Elisha knew that God had called him into the ministry. From experience, Brother Massa told about how important learning is to those called into God’s service. Elisha followed Elijah for 10 years, making himself a servant in preparation for his eventual ministry. The newly called should seek out a good preacher as a good example and teacher. Two instances in the bible were given: 1) Joshua was a servant to Moses (Joshua 1:1) and 2) Timothy was a student, fellow-laborer, and travel companion to Paul (Acts 16:1).
  • The Prophet’s Continuation – In 2 Kings 2, Elijah was taken from Elisha, who would then to be on his own. Preachers, the new and the experienced, face tests. The Apostle Paul urged his followers to “be not weary in well doing.” 2 Thess 3:13. Patience and long-suffering is often necessary for a preacher. For a new preacher, it takes patience to build a congregation large enough to support a church building. For experienced preachers, it takes long-suffering to get through “the routine of the ministry when nothing happens” and you must “stay doing the right thing”, Brother Massa taught.
  • The Prophet’s Cry – Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee.” 2 Kings 2:9. Elisha responded by saying, “let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me.” 2 Kings 2:9. A preacher worth his salt will cry to God for the help and indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
  • The Prophet’s Choice – Elisha became God’s choice and he took up the mantle of Elijah. When God calls us, Brother Massa advised, acknowledge God’s choice in humility. He said, “When God called me, he cast his mantle upon me.” When you pick up God’s mantle, you not only get all the blessings, but all the problems also. Just as Elisha had trouble with his followers not listening to his advise, so too do people today ignore their preacher’s advise. “God lets them go off and suffer the consequences.”, Brother Massa said.

We were told that, to be filled with the Holy Spirit, we need to give everything to God, surrendering our life and ambitions to Him. Brother Massa finished with examples of powerful preachers and men of God, each filled with the power that comes from the Holy Ghost.Brother Massa began the invitation by calling men forward “if God is speaking to your heart”. For those who God may be calling to be a preacher, he prayed for God’s help. “Amazing Grace” was being sung by Julia and Michael G., with Michael playing piano. Brother Berkinshaw and Brother Saxton finish the event with closing prayers. Thank you to all who attended and for taking the time to read this event review.

Pastor Appreciation Day: Another Hijacking at Gospel Light

Disclaimer: Your blogger apologizes for the length of this post, but it could not be helped. The urge to chronologically report our service was unavoidable – I needed to express my joy. If you choose to read the entire article, I hope you find it enjoyable and a blessing. Please leave a comment also. Special thanks to Bonnie and Mateo for their fine job of arranging a most memorable morning.Pastor Vince Giardino was not fooled. He knew what was coming this past Sunday morning at the 11 AM service. Or so he thought. He had no idea of the extent of what was coming. Had he known that it was the scheming mind of Bonnie Vazquez and her accomplice husband, Mateo Vazquez, that would be planning the occasion, he might not have bothered to prepare a sermon.

So much occurred and so much to write about. Sigh. The morning was simply wonderful; there is no other way to put it. Pastor Appreciation Day was just that, a day of appreciation, and so much more. It was a day imbibed with the Holy Spirit indwelling a congregation that was more than just a church. We truly came together as one body in spirit and in worship. Perhaps we had a taste of heaven.

Written words will do no justice to our Sunday morning service. This post will only attempt to list the events as best as can be remembered. Those who attended will understand:After the seating in front had been rearranged, Mateo asked Pastor, Lori, and their children to come forward and sit in front of the congregation. As the children’s choir was quietly shepherded on stage, Mateo honored Pastor Giardino with a short speech about his tireless, 7 days a week, dedication to his job as Pastor. He also praised the whole Giardino family for their sacrifices and contributions toward the church and the ministry. For six years they have served at Gospel Light.

Prior to leading the children’s choir in song, Bonnie pointed out the scripture passage high above the alter: Ps 144:15 “Happy is that people, whose God is the Lord.” For the Giardino family, the children sang, “Walking Up the King’s Highway”.

With Bonnie assuming the role of Master of Ceremonies, the Giardino kids were in for a surprise. Each was honored in order of their age:

  1. Michael – A letter of appreciation composed by many of Michael’s friends was read by Mateo. Michael was handed a card, as were all the Giardino kids in turn.
  2. Julia – Raquel and Analyse came forward to read a touching tribute to Julia.
  3. Ross – Ross’s close friends Joe C., Roberto, and Derek came up to read their tribute to him.
  4. Leah – Madison and Abigail were next to come forward, expressing their gratitude to Leah.
  5. Lydia – Samantha, Kiana, and a friend spoke highly of their sister in Christ, Lydia.
  6. Nathanael – Gail Reed then ushered in three children from the nursery, who presented Nathan with two wrapped presents. Gail said her nursery class was honored to have “The Little Prince”, his classroom nickname, as a classmate.

The five older kids opened their cards to find cash for shopping and Nathanael unwrapped his presents. Also, the family was told that they would be treated to a steak dinner.

After the kids stepped down, Lori Giardino was presented with a large, multicolor bunch of roses; the multiple colors were meant to symbolize the diversity within the congregation at Gospel Light. With Leah B. and Brenda by her side, Pearl gave Lori a heartfelt tribute and then handed her a card. Inside was a certificate for a day at a spa.

It was time to finally get around to paying tribute to Pastor Vince Giardino. Bonnie expressed how hard it was to find gifts “for a pastor who never asks for much”. Considering the difficulty, the results were truly inspired:

  • Pastor’s “main gift” was to be a shelving unit with a cabinet to help organize his office. Anyone who has paid a visit to Pastor G.’s office understands the urgency in this.
  • Pastor received a box filled with the “Thank You” cards filled out by members of his church. Also in the box were snacks to help tide him over while he read the notes.
  • Our pastor was handed a decorative gift bag and inside was bags of coffee and a travel mug – a perfect fit for Pastor G.
  • Another bag came his way. Inside it was 4 restaurant coupons: Cheeseburger/Cheeseburger, DiBella’s, Jim and Ralph’s, and of course … Nick Tahou’s. Pastor G., you have no secrets.
  • The gift that made your blogger envious came last: a model sail boat. On the main sail was the words to a verse from the hymn “It Is Well With My Soul”. Once again, a very appropriate choice (e.g. just look at the walls in Pastor’s office)!

Mateo stepped forward to read 1 Tim 3:1-7, which prescribed the qualifications the Apostle Paul laid out for being a church pastor. No one doubted that our dear Pastor met them all. Mateo made special note of the last condition, that of having a good reputation with people outside of the church. If Pastor Giardino still had hopes of preaching that morning, they were soon to be dissolved, because …

Letters of Appreciation had arrived from pastors “outside of the church”! Three that were available were read by Mateo. They were from Pastor Bob Brado, Pastor Scott Strobel, and Pastor Vince Massa. Later, at the evening service, three more letters would be read: from Evangelist Dave Spurgeon, Evangelist Sam Gipp, and Pastor Ken MacDonald. The content of the letters can be found elsewhere on this blog.

Along came Grayson, and carrying his rhythm guitar, he stepped up to the microphone at the pulpit. What followed had to be seen and heard. Singing a composition of his own doing, Grayson crooned a bluegrass melody that had our pastor in stitches and the congregation captivated by laughter. The song hinged on Pastor G.’s propensity to collect “useless items”. With Mateo chiming in, a dozen or more silly items were mentioned. “Our preacher is a man, who does what he can, to find a use for everything”, Grayson warbled. However, Grayson had concealed a profound message in the song: Our pastor sees in each of us a useful and a valuable soul, despite the “useless” sinners we may have once been. For each of us, he looks “to find a use” for the glory of God! Amen.

Next, Gospel Light’s adult choir stepped up to fill the stage. Pastor’s son Michael took his place at the piano and Bonnie came forward to conduct. Three of the singers would take the lead: Leah B., Jaime, and Jesenia. The song they sang, “Pastor’s Song”, was so very appropriate, it was as if the writer of the song knew our pastor personally.

Bonnie and Mateo (Clyde) finally brought their program of appreciation to a close. Our pastor, full of humility and grace, came to the pulpit in sincere thankfulness. He expressed how “a church coming together is very powerful” and had us turn in our bibles to 1 Cor 14:23-25. Pastor Giardino saw in his congregation this morning a Spirit driven church, one that would convince “one that believeth not” to fall “down on his face … worship God, and report that God is in you of a truth”.

Pastor had intended on having Julia and Michael sing “Amazing Grace” as our morning music special … and so the two came forward to perform at last. And not only them, but as the Holy Spirit moved, many of us came forward to the alter to kneel and pray. Pastor Giardino asked us to pray that the Spirit put a fire in us and revive our hearts and minds. “Thank you for your kindness” he said, “but more importantly, if God is in us at Gospel Light, if we are doing it right”, then for those who visit, “they will see God in us … and will fall down and worship God … and will say ‘I want what they have’”. Our pastor promised that “the conviction of the Word of God will penetrate into the mind of an unbeliever.”

Photos of the Valentine Dinner at Gospel Light

Monday evening at Gospel Light Bible Baptist Church was an absolutely marvelous time for everyone involved with the Valentine Dinner. The Lord has richly blessed our church by allowing our congregation to closely bond as a Christian family and this was very evident at the banquet.

Your friendly neighborhood blogger snapped off a few photos during the event. Rather than place them all here on the blog, they are located in the GLBBC web site’s Photo Album page. On the front page of the web site, click on “PICTURES” and then click on “Ministry Pictures”. — OR — To make things easy, just click on the button below. Remember, no one ever accused your blogger of being a photographer, so pardon the occasional blurriness in the photos.

Progressive Dinner Recap

Pastor Peter Bard led a flock of 9 young couples from Gospel Light through the gauntlet of 4 locations during the Progressive Dinner this past Friday night (01-28-11). Our church couples were able to endure appetizers at the Caletz home, dinner entrées at the Vazquez and Giardino homes, and lastly, desserts in the church library. Pastor Bard gave a charge from Eccl 4:9-12 with the theme, “a threefold cord is not quickly broken”. Two host couples, Rey and Pearl Caletz, and Mateo and Bonnie Vazquez, gave testimonies from their marital experiences. The level of participation in this event was a true inspiration for the church.