IB Changed Lives

Lucia Vezie’s story

I grew up in the Catholic religion went to church, every week, Sunday School you name it my parents made sure we all were there. I remember one Sunday when I was around 9 years old we went to mass early and then the kids were sent to their classrooms. I don't remember what the teaching was that day but I didn't understand and I asked the teacher Why? What does that mean I don't understand the teacher politely looked at me and continued her lesson. When my parents came to get me she pulled them aside and told them that I was a bit disruptive today. When we got in the car they talked to me about sitting and listening quietly when the teacher is talking. I am sure I had questions when I was younger but this one day stayed with me.  Through my teens and into adulthood I had questions that didn't seem to be answered. I always felt that I was missing something and that made me uncomfortable. I believed and trusted in God throughout my life.

I moved to Imperial Beach November 2011 shortly after moving my daughter and son-in-law (Chante & Roger) asked me to go with them to church. The first time I went to Calvary IB was at the Boys and Girls Club and I was greeted by hugs and welcomes.

When Pastor Sammy started his sermon he welcomed everybody and explained the way he does his sermons.  I loved the idea that first of all we were reading from the Bible and we were going chapter by chapter line by line. It was good to feel like I understood what was being said I thought WOW so that's what it means. I have been going to Calvary IB ever since and every time I go something comes up that makes me think back to when I was 9 and know that the Lord just answered another question. I was baptized in October 2012 and know that the Lord is guiding me every step of the way. It amazes and comforts me that no matter what your age he has not forgotten your question(s) the Lord will answer you if you come to Him.

Michael's Story

I grew up in a very conservative and traditional Roman Catholic family in rural Pennsylvania. I served the church as an Altar Boy until I was 18 years old. I would attend Catechism on Saturday, with mass, and confession on Sunday. I thought I knew Jesus at that time. I believed I was all right. I joined the Navy after high school and found that the world was very different from where and how I grew up. I stopped going to church every Sunday. Then I stopped going all together. I started to run with a different group of people trying to fit in with the popular crowd. I was living in the world at this time and all I was thinking is that I am okay; at least I am not as bad as those people.

                I met my wife 24 years ago and immediately I had a family. I found myself being a father of two wonderful boys. My wife knew Jesus at this time. Even though we knew Him, we still did not go to church regularly. We would go to this church or that church when we felt obligated or inspired. We tried to go every Easter. I just did not hear or see anything that would have made me want to go back. All I kept thinking was we are okay and at least we are not as bad as those other people.

                Two years ago, my wife’s hairdresser told her that there was a new church (Calvary IB) starting at the Boys and Girls Club and my wife wanted to attend. Our sons are now grown up and have families of their own, so we decided to try it out. We both walked into the gym that first Sunday in October 2011. We received HI’s and greetings from many friendly, smiling people who were getting the gym set up. We even got a hug from a cheerful man at the door. A young man (Pastor Sammy) got up and started to read word for word from the Gospel of John. He then stopped and explained what he read. I had never heard the Bible explained like that before. In words I could understand. This made me curious and excited to know more about the Bible.

During the church’s first Communion service, I remember sitting there listening to the pastor talking about repenting from your sins. I could not stop asking the Lord for forgiveness. My belief has always been that communion is a sacred event. The way that I was living my life made me feel unworthy to take it. The last time I took communion was 33 years ago at my old Catholic Church. That day I felt the Lord forgive me of my sins and that is when I started my personal relationship with the Lord. Right there in that gym of the Boys and Girls Club. My wife and I started going to the Basics Classes. My personal relationship with the Lord began to get stronger. As we learned about the Bible I found that I wanted more. I wanted to do more. Now my wife and I are teaching Sunday school for the first and second graders. I am learning more about my Lord and Savior every day and I am excited to see what the Lord has planned for me. If there is one thing I have learned at Calvary IB it’s this: I should not judge. I am a sinner like everyone else. However, we all have forgiveness through the finished work of Jesus upon the cross. I have given my life to Jesus. Thank you Lord for being our good Shepherd and finding this lost sheep.

 

 

Nichole's Story

IB NicholeI didn’t grow up in a home where we went to church, prayed, worshiped, or even really talked about GOD. I knew He existed, but never thought anymore about Him.  As a young adult I was lost in darkness. So lost I didn’t see any way out. I was consumed by drugs, alcohol, loudness, and deception; all under the pretenses of what I thought to be love.  I heard no one but those who sought to do evil through me. At the time I didn’t even know it.  My weakness allowed me to be drawn into an insubstantial happiness.  When my daughter was born I couldn’t even see her as the gift she was. As she grew older, the real love she gave me brought me strength.

In the summer of 2012, I was devoured in a confusingly dangerous situation. By the grace of GOD it was taken out of my life- just like that. Soon after that something happened to me. It’s hard to explain, but I was joyful.  The people I once thought of as ‘friends’ made me uncomfortable. The things I once thought I couldn’t live without made me sick. I wasn’t sure what was going on at first, but there was an undeniable force drawing me to seek God out. It led me to discover Jesus Christ at Calvary IB. Pastor Sammy was in the book of John, reading about the beating Jesus had received for our sin- my sin. It broke my heart to know I was ‘living the life’ at the expense of Jesus; who only loved me and wanted my love in return.  I walked up to Pastor Sammy and told him I needed to talk to him and Pastor Bryan. They prayed over me. I confessed my sin, asked our Lord GOD for forgiveness, and received Him into my life. It felt like something heavy and dark was being drawn out of my body; replaced with hope.   I professed my new-found love of GOD and, along with my daughter, was baptized for the at Calvary San Diego by Pastor Sammy.

                Tabitha, my daughter, and I now have Jesus Christ in our lives.  I thank the Lord every day for the blessings He has given to me and continues to give me.  I have a new life. I am a Christian, and I want to be like Jesus.  GOD is with me in everything I do. I know that now, and I can battle my fears with a new sword because of it.  My trust lies solely in Him, and that’s an awesome thing. I now find my heart and home here at Calvary IB. The love I have received from my church family is such a blessing. I know I will continue to receive the word of GOD through Calvary IB and find my place in the church. I will spread the word of GOD and raise my daughter to love and know Him as well.  I will continue to yearn for GOD and get to know Him better. Thank you Calvary IB for your continued love and support.  WE LOVE BACK!!

 

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