This year at The Gathering incorporating the Annual Assembly, we will welcome Glorious Hope Community Baptist Church into our NSW & ACT Baptists family of churches.

Glorious Hope was officially launched in October 2002 and began meeting in the hall of Toongabbie East Public School. They met in the school hall for 14-15 years. Focused on their local community, Glorious Hope saw their ministry as to the struggling and vulnerable members of their community, including victims of crime and broken families.After a change of principal at the school, Glorious Hope had to find somewhere else to meet. They became a house church for 2-3 years before landing, after a lot of prayer, an agreement with the Pendle Hill Seven-day Adventist Church to use their church building on Sundays and Wednesdays.

The church has been through many seasons. Some of growth and some where their congregation shrunk in numbers, such as after leaving the community in East Toongabbie. But God has been faithful to regroup and regather.

When Glorious Hope was planted, they began as an independent Baptist church. But now is looking forward to becoming part of the Baptist Association.

Sam Baissari, pastor at Glorious Hope, reflects on his observations at this time. “Seeing the way the Association equips its people and supports its pastors, the servants of God – the resourcefulness of the Association made me realise how independent I was. I was alone.”

Sam was also drawn to the Gen1K vision of 1000 healthy churches in a generation. He began talking about this, and without being pressured to join he was introduced to people in, and became more connected with, the Association.

“It’s very exciting to know there’s a place for us as a church to start being involved in your life as Baptist Association,” reflects Sam.

Glorious Hope began the process of becoming affiliated in 2020. Sam says they welcomed the detailed assessment. “I truly enjoyed the seriousness and the severity of the examination. I come into the Baptist community as a partner, a servant willing to give more than to receive. I thank God for this privilege to serve Him, and more importantly in this season to become an integral part of the Association.”

With just shy of fifty members, Glorious Hope represents ten cultural backgrounds. “We’re not a big church but we’ve maintained unity and spiritual growth. There’s appreciation for the love of God and Jesus. And more understanding of what is our call and what is expected of us.”

Looking to the future of his congregation, Sam prays for continued unity and ministry based on the life of the church in Acts chapter 6. Sam has recently discovered that they meet on the same street as Pendle Hill Baptist Church, and has begun exploring how they can work together as “sister churches”.

Sam says that his church will continue to pray to be a living organism, to the Kingdom of God and to the Association.


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