Weekly eBlast
May 9, 2013

Harvest of Hope helps to give a mother the best Mother's Day gift ever


Eight years ago, I made a decision to open my home to foster children.  I knew it would require sacrifice on my part, but it was one I was willing to make.  You see, I was raised in a loving family with two parents who would always help people in need--both children and adults.  I saw first-hand what love looked like....what it felt like.  I knew healthy discipline and learned things like gratitude, faith, appreciation, kindness and empathy.  These "lessons" were currency in my family.  The most important experiences in my childhood were those moments that taught me "unconditional love".  Unconditional Love was the source of my self esteem, my confidence and it was the security blanket that made "family" bond different from any other relationship I would encounter in life. I was loved "no matter what."

In 2005, at 28 yrs old, I became a licensed foster/adoptive parent with the simple goal of showing kids unconditional love. I always felt that if they experienced "unconditional love" at least once on their life, they'd never forget it and they'd know it does exist. I was a single mom at the time but, instead of feeling at a disadvantage, I felt extremely blessed!  My child was healthy; I was employed and had very loving and supportive family and friends. I knew I was blessed and felt obligated to share my blessings with others. Thankfully, I was licensed through Harvest of Hope.

In late 2011, God led me to tell Harvest of Hope that I was ready to move from a foster parent to an adoptive parent. My three God- sent children were placed with me in mid-2012.  Exactly, 41 weeks later, their adoptions were finalized.  It's no coincidence that the 41 weeks coincides with the gestation period of pregnancy.  This blessing has been as natural and God-ordained as anyone could imagine.  In hindsight, I am in awe of how the last 8 years have been such a testimony to God's will and NOT my own.  In making the decision to 'share my blessings with others', I have been blessed beyond my own imagination. My plan to adopt one child became God's plan for me to adopt three! It's important to note that I've been blessed in all areas of my life.  In my heart, I know it's largely because in 2005, I 'decided' to make a sacrifice and be a blessing to others.

First Baptist Church and Harvest of Hope have made all of this possible.  I wouldn't have my children and my life would be nowhere near as happy and fulfilled as it is today, were it not for them.  They've left an indelible mark on my life and the lives of my entire family.  "Thank You" does not begin to express the depth of appreciation and love I have for the entire FBC and Harvest of Hope family.


Jackie P Taylor

Youth & Parent Engagement


Direct: 732-668-3333

First Lady Donna Soaries' 60th Birthday Celebration
hosted by the Pastor's Aide Ministry

Friday, May 17

7:00 PM

Rev. C.H. Brown, Jr. Fellowship Hall


All are invited to come celebrate the First Lady's birthday.


As a gift to the First Lady, you are welcome to make donations, on her behalf, to Pillar College (her alma mater).

Annual Spring Fashion Show "Over the Edge, A New Era in Men's Fashions"
hosted by the Scholarship Ministry

Saturday, May 18

11:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Rev. C.H. Brown, Jr. Fellowship Hall


Fashion provided by 24:7 INC   |   Vendors and door prizes   |   Donation: $40


Tickets will be available after each service in the upstairs lobby. 

For additional information contact Lynda Ocampo Thomas at nanasboy@aol.com. 

FBC Men's Day Weekend
hosted by Men Building Men and the Music Ministry
May 18 - 19
The weekend begins with a concert on Saturday, May 18 at 5:00 PM, featuring the Men's Mass Choir, Bro. William McLeod, gospel rap artist - Wes E and other special guests. The Men's Day celebration continues on Sunday, May 19. The guest preacher for the 9 and 11 AM services will be Rev. Frederick A. Davis, senior pastor of First Calvary Baptist Church in Durham, NC. The weekend will conclude with the Biker's Blessing at 2:00 PM.
Academic Excellence Announcements
  • We are accepting report cards from now until Sunday, May 26. Stop by the Welcome Center and place a copy of the report card and any accolades in the clear box on the credenza. No originals, please! If your child makes our honor roll, we'll announce the good news in June. If your child needs help, we are still taking applications and matching tutors with students. We want to see all report cards so we can help everyone achieve Academic Excellence. 
  • We are continuing our monthly Game Night! Game Night will be heldduring tutoring hours. Feel free to come in an extra day with your student and enjoy the games. One adult is needed per game and must be either a tutor or parent/guardian. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Dorothy Thompson at thompsondorothy@hotmail.com.
Haitian Heritage Day
hosted by the Haitian Ministry

Sunday, May 26


Come and celebrate Haitian Heritage Day with an afternoon of food, music and artwork. Lunch will be served immediately following the 11:00 AM service. Tickets for this event can be purchased after each service outside of the Rev. C.H. Brown, Jr. Fellowship Hall. The cost is $20. Monies will be used to support our work in Haiti. Then stay and enjoy a FREE CONCERT featuring world-renown Baritonist Pierre Gardy Fontaine. The concert begins at 3:00 PM.

Stop in to get your Mother's Day cards! The Faith in Action Bookstore has new arrivals weekly for your May shopping. We specialize in Bibles, gifts, books, music, sermon CDs, and All Occasion cards.
Lemonade Challenge
hosted by the Entrepreneurship Ministry

Attention all parents of first grade students to high school seniors! Two events are being planned to giveyouth the opportunity to learn the basics of business ownership and earn money. Classes start in May. Contact Barbara A. Fuller at (732) 435-1299 or bfuller@focusonyounow.com for more information. 
Market Fair
hosted by the Scholarship Ministry

Saturday, June 1

8:00 AM - 4:00 PM

First Baptist Church parking lot 


Vendors please contact Linda Starks at (732) 296-0073 or linda.starks10@yahoo.com or Phyllis Reddick at (732) 828-8427 or reddickpa@aol.com. The vendor donation is $25 per space. 

Refreshments will be on sale. Rain date is June 8. 

A Civil Rights Tour
hosted by the Senior Fellowship Ministry

8 Days / 7 Nights

Birmingham & Montgomery, Alabama

Atlanta, Georgia


September 13-20, 2013

Departing from First Baptist Church


Trip Includes:

*7 Nights Deluxe Accommodations

 2 Nights Stop Over Accommodations: 2 Nights in Birmingham, AL

2 Nights in Montgomery, AL; 1 Night in Atlanta, GA

*7 Fabulous Breakfasts (5 HOT BREAKFASTS in Alabama and Georgia)

*5 Full Dinners (1 Dinner & Entertainment at Medieval Times in Atlanta, GA)

*Guided Tour of the 16th Street Baptist Church

*All Taxes, Meal Gratuities, Admission Fee's, Luggage Handling Included

*Free Time to Explore & Sightseeing on own


Single Occupancy $1085 per person / Double Occupancy $775  per person

Please Contact:   (732) 828-1190  or (732) 985-3338

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DeForest B. Soaries, Jr., Senior Pastor
Donna Soaries, First Lady