BAKER — Since August, members of Shady Grove Assembly of God Church have increased their community involvement under new pastor Melvin Lee Coon Jr.'s direction.
The church recently hosted a health fair and volunteered to assist two area churches with fall festival activities.
In addition to providing meals to needy residents, the church plans to reach out to Baker School students.
Coon said he wants to build on the church's young adult and children's ministries led by Brandon McMackin.
"We have been moving full speed and my feet have not even hit the ground yet," Coon said. "I'm not going to be here unless we are involved in the community. We are going to minister and be a lighthouse to this community."
With other churches' help, Coon said they all can all reach a common goal.
"Not one denomination is in control; that is not how God intended," he said. "You put your differences aside to reach that common goal, which is helping these families (in need)."
Long-time church member Brenda Baker said she's noticed an impact.
"It appears to me that people who haven't been involved (with the church) in awhile are now getting involved," she said. "He has definitely sparked new interest."
Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Matthew Brown at 850-682-6524 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @cnbMatthew.