The first services at First Baptist Church of Gibsonton were held in 1930 under a tent on land that was donated for the church. The first worship building was built nine years later. From the very beginning, the church focused on ministering to others while sharing the good news of the Bible. Ninety-three years later, First Baptist Church of Gibsonton has expanded its ministry beyond Hillsborough County through the online programming of its Christian station, Christian World TV.
Pastor Malcolm Clements has been pastor of First Baptist of Gibsonton for 48 years. He found that the COVID-19 pandemic challenged the church’s ability to reach members and stay in contact with them.
“I said, ‘What can we do?’ We had just finished a building program with remodeling here. I was by myself and the Lord spoke to me and said, ‘What is your next project?’ I hadn’t thought that far, but God was pushing me. Then, I had the vision of the TV station,” Clements said.
The church built a studio, hired and trained staff and invested in high-quality equipment, including Sony 4K cameras, a PreSonus sound board, MacBook Pros and Mac minis. Christian World TV launched in May of 2022.
Steve Brady is the internet director of Christian World TV.
“Services are livestreamed on Sunday morning, Sunday night and Wednesday night on Facebook. Christan World TV shares Christian programming, including preachers and teachers. We are going to launch kids programming, probably in January,” Brady said.
Clements shared that Christian World TV is a growing ministry. It has been watched in 119 cities in America and other countries. There are 291 YouTube subscribers, and streaming is watched in around 300 homes. There are regular listeners, and local viewers have started attending the church on-site.
“We are just starting. We are growing into this. But the potential of what we are doing is unlimited. For a midsize church in South Hillsborough County to be able to have a ministry that literally is not only touching all of America but the world — it’s amazing,” Clements said.
The mission statement of Christian World TV is: “To fulfill the great commission of reaching every person around the world with the gospel of Jesus Christ through social media and technology.”
For more information about Christian World TV, visit https://christianworldtv.com/. Christian World TV videos can be found on YouTube at www.youtube.com/@christianworldtvfbg. First Baptist Church of Gibsonton is located at 9912 Indiana St. in Gibsonton.