Tricia (Ingala) and I were married on June 24, 1995 after our education at Bible college. We have four daughters, Bethany Joy, Victoria Joy, JoHannah Joy, and Jenna Joy. After Bible College I accepted the youth pastor job at my home church in Waterbury, Ct. The Lord’s hand was upon that ministry when I took the position in 1995. We only had a handful of teens, and in just a few years we grew tremendously. We saw teens getting saved, and we saw teens were showing up for soulwinning; in fact on almost every occasion the teens outnumbered the adults by 2-1. Our teens that attended public schools were burdened for their lost friends and would invite them out to church, we saw many of these teens get saved through the old fashioned message of salvation. Oh what joy it is to see a young person on fire for God. I was the youth pastor at Lighthouse Baptist Church in Waterbury Ct. for 5 years before the need arose in our church for an assistant pastor. I took that job as an assistant pastor for 3 years before I felt the Lords calling on my life into Evangelism. Our plans was to start a church in Wolcott for many years now, but did not know when God was going to call us. Through careful prayer and Bible reading, we feel that now is the God God is calling us to plant a church.
I was born into a Christian home in 1973, in which my father at the time was the pastor of Faith Baptist Church in Wolcott, Ct. Growing up I was always in church and was always hearing the gospel message, whether it was at church or at home I was constantly hearing about how God sent his son to die for my sins. I will never forget that day when I was eight years old and I never gave the gospel any thought, I was hearing it all the time, but never gave it any thought. One day my brothers were arguing on whom was saved at the earliest age. My oldest brother said “five”, my younger brother said “four”, and myself not to be outdone said that I was saved at the age of “three”. It was not until later that night while I was lying in bed that it hit me that I was lost and my sins were sending me to hell. I remember lying in my bed scared to die and spend eternity in hell, at that moment my mom walked in to kiss me goodnight and I asked her if she could show me from the Bible how to be saved. My mom quickly got her Bible and showed me and then we knelt down on the side of the bed and I asked Jesus to save me.
I knew at an early age that God had called me to preach, but due to my dad being a preacher, my grandfather a preacher, and my brother already called to preach, I fought this off for a long time. The last thing that I wanted to do was to do what seemed like the family trade. It wasn’t until I was in 10th grade that I started to let God take control of my life. Dr. Lee Robertson was preaching in chapel one day and I told God in the middle of the message that I was going to give my life completely to him, and during the invitation I walked the aisle and I surrendered my life to Him. I never once doubted that call, but many times have wondered, why me Lord? When God called me to preach, He didn’t look at who I was, but he saw what I had the potential of being.
I am the oldest of 6 children and I was born into a strong Roman Catholic family. My mom was the first in our family to be saved through the testimony and faithful witness of my soon to be aunt. I was 1 when my mom heard my aunt praying with me and desired for me to learn how to ‘pray’ like that. That night my mom finally understood and was saved. My mom and I began attending my aunts Baptist church. That was fine with my dad but he wanted nothing to do with it. Consequently, I went to church with mom and came home to a loving father who wanted nothing to do with Christianity. It seemed that my mom always had us praying for daddy to get saved. In March of 79′ after the death of both of my grandfathers at the age of 5 I saw my need of a saviour. During a thunderstorm, in which I thought the wall of the house would come crashing down and kill me and I would go to hell, my mom led me to the Lord. In Nov. of that same year I became very ill and was diagnosed with leukemia (Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia). Well this was the last straw for my Dad. After 5 yrs of faithful prayer from his family, the death of his father and father in law, and his daughter dying, my daddy stopped running and accepted the Lord. I am so thankful that the Lord used me to see my daddy saved. I was in that trial run for chemo and radiation on leukemia patients at Yale New Haven Hospital and it worked for me. At the age of 8 the Lord worked on my heart and I had perfect peace that I was to be healed of leukemia because I was to be the wife of a man in full time service. At age 12, that dream became reality when they pronounced me cured. At 16 my soon to be husband finally surrendered to full time service and at that chapel meeting the Lord impressed on my heart that I would marry him and he was to be an evangelist. Now it took my husband longer to figure that out, but by the summer when we turned 17 (we are a day apart) we had stopped hating each other and began courting. We were married 5 yrs and 1 month later after our first date.