Yesterday afternoon, eight women were baptized in the courtyard at Union Gospel Mission of Salem’s Simonka Place. Surrounding them were their mentors, UGM staff, and other shelter guests, all there to witness proclamations of faith.
Before inviting the women up to the front, Pastor Jason Treadwell from local “Church on the Hill” shared a few words, encouraging each member of the small crowd to “Live baptized; live soaked in the presence of God.”
Baptism by no way means salvation, but rather, it’s evidence of life-change from those who’ve already received salvation—a symbol of commitment to Christ.
“In my deepest, darkest moments, He was there,” says Theresa, explaining why she chose to be baptized.
Before she was dipped into the water, Christen declares, “I believe there’s still purpose for me.”
At the foot of the bright, yellow cross, prayers were spoken over each person. We can say with confidence that God is going to take them places. He is their Great Defender. He loves them with a love that can’t be put into words.
We don’t want anyone to leave UGM unchanged. From the first day someone walks through our doors to the last day they cross our threshold, our mission is to see restoration and transformation.
When Jesus Christ is at the center of each life, we know that changing the face of homelessness, one story at a time, is possible.
“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord cause His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; The Lord lift up His face to you, and give you peace,” Numbers 6:24-26.