Gateway Welcomes Six New Members Through Baptism

Larry Gibson, church pastor, baptized Ernie Estes, Laurena McCormick, Merry Dyson, and Leonard, Robin, and Mary Parnau on Jan. 21, 2006, at the Gateway Christian Fellowship of Seventh-day Adventists in Grants Pass, Ore.

Estes has always had the desire to be baptized. He met Marilyn Serenana at Wal-Mart, and then again at the local Dorcas. She invited him to attend Gateway with her. Ernie enjoyed the people and friendly atmosphere Gateway offers, and he started taking Bible studies for baptism. Ernie and Marilyn were recently married, and he says Sabbath has become the highlight of his week.

Leonard Parnau grew up believing in Jesus Christ but didn’t have a personal relationship with Him. In recent years he attended a Pentecostal church with his wife Robin. He was invited to a Bible study Gibson was having. Robin’s uncle is Seventh-day Adventist, so she was already well-acquainted with our beliefs. Leonard, his wife Robin, and daughter Mary started attending Gateway and pride themselves on “being absent only one Sabbath.”

McCormick came very close to dying from her medical problems and she thanks the Lord for her life. Although she was baptized when she was little, she wanted to renew her commitment now that she has a personal relationship with the Lord and knows what baptism means.

Dyson was baptized at the age of 12 into the Catholic church. She says there were lots of rules and regulations, but she didn’t feel exposed to the love of Christ.

She was invited to a Bible study at a co-worker's house. She thoroughly enjoyed her studies and started attending Gateway. Dyson called Gibson and let him know she was ready to be baptized! She says she feels friendly warmth in her fellowship with Gateway, and she is “blessed daily.”

August 01, 2006 / Oregon Conference