Jessica Warren, graduate of the Faith Home, serves warm meals at Christmas of Hope.

Founded on December 12, 1952, Lighthouse Gospel Mission still opens its doors daily with a mission “to walk in the love of God, to display mercy to others, and to live with integrity” (Matthew 23:23). It strives to be a positive force impacting lives in our community by sharing the love of Christ and helping those in need.

With Christmas around the corner, Lighthouse Gospel Mission is excited to continue its Holidays of Hope with a free event on Friday, December 17. Santa will be there with toys for children ages 2-10, all who attend are welcome to a hot meal and a wonderful Christmas service and, best of all, each attendee can go home with a free food basket.

Nikki Santana, head of media, cannot be more excited: “Honestly, it’s my favorite time of the year. I’ve seen people who can now feed their families and parents who find toys for their children who otherwise may be unable to afford presents. People come in broken and always leave with full bellies and a different countenance. It’s a blessing all around.”

Lighthouse Gospel Mission also offers an 18-month residential discipleship program called Faith Home for people living with addiction and other challenges. It truly hopes through community outreach to make people aware of this program. Santana knows firsthand how life-changing this ministry is.

Now a mother of two, her life was very different before she graduated from the Faith Home: “Jesus has completely transformed my life. I was a heroin addict and an atheist. I went in just expecting another rehab, maybe a bed to sleep in because it had been a while since I had slept in a bed. Now, 10 years later, I’m ministering and serving in the church and the Faith Home.”

The entire community is invited to Christmas of Hope. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the event begins at 7 p.m. Again, it is free to everyone. It also offers Easter of Hope and Thanksgiving of Hope events with fun games and activities, free meals and food baskets to take home.

If you are interested in donating food, funds or new, unopened toys, or if you want to find out more about its events and ministries, please contact Lighthouse Gospel Missions directly at 677-5220. You can also donate online as well as find out more at

Office hours are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., and Wednesday/Friday, 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. The ministry and all events are located at 7211 S. 78th St. in Riverview.

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