Gospel Light Baptist Church started in 1977 as a burden of Pastor Harold Elting Jr. He was a local boy who was saved in North Carolina and returned home to preach Christ to the people of the place where he grew up. The church was started in an office building and then moved to its present location in 1981. The building we own was once Kearny Union Church, and the building has an interesting history.
Kearny Union Church was organized in 1872 as a Sunday School by Halloway W. Clouse along with 17 other individuals and the financial assistance of General and Mrs. N.H. Halstead. Kearny Union Church looked for a place in which they could build a building. The Kearny Land Company donated the property with the understanding that there was to be a building erected for Sunday School use within 6 months, and at the cost of no less than $1,500.00. In less time than stipulated, however, and in mid-winter, the present building was erected. The cost was $1,650.00 and the year was 1876.
The Sunday School saw many superintendents over the years, some of which were George A. Rutman, Councilman J. Wilbur Harvey ( who had running water and electric installed in the building in the 1920's) and Stephen Lawrence. One of the men who was used of the Lord was Pastor Christian Zitzow. Known to everyone as Chris. He was a blessing to all who knew him. He loved young people and through him many came to know Jesus Christ as Saviour. Chris went home to be with the Lord in 1982.
Kearny Union Church closed it's doors in 1980 and it was then that Pastor Harold Elting contacted some of it's members and was allowed to use the building for $1.00 per year. Before the year was out the building and property was given to Gospel Light Baptist Church. In recent years, the building has seen some major repairs and renovations. These have totaled close to $90,000.00.
A far cry from the $1,650.00 it took to build it. But our God is not bound by the economics of the day. The Lord has used this place to be a light on a very busy corner since 1876. It is our prayer that the Lord will continue to use this place to reach people with the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ.