- Faith & Family
Last week, Pastor Amos Allen of Apostolic Revival Temple celebrated his church’s 16th anniversary.
“Everybody said I was crazy to go to Overtown,” said the 58-year-old minister. But, “it’s home now and I’m not going anywhere.”
Today, the church has about 60 to 70 members and offers several outreach ministries such as a regular feeding ministry and food giveaways during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.
But, according to Allen, the church provides the local community with more than just material benefits.
“A lot of people in Overtown are hurt and we’re there to help,” he explained. “We never reject anybody coming in from off the street as long as they come in the church and act right. We feed them, we clothe them and we love them.”
A moving ministry
Apostolic Revival Center was founded by Allen with just seven members. Since then, the church’s membership enrollment had managed to swell to include over 100 worshippers.
Yet two years ago, the building next to the church in Overtown was condemned and the parishioners found out that their church would also be torn down. A fight to save their sanctuary ended in defeat and they had to quickly vacate their church home.
“I knew that I was called me to do work [here], so I told my members that even if they knock down the church we would remain in Overtown,” Allen recalled. “It was bad but through God we received the strength to make it through.”
So, the church relocated to a local bar where they held services for over year. Eventually, the church was able to move to their current location on Fourteenth Street.
Faith in Overtown
One of his biggest joys as a minister has been witnessing to a variety of individuals - from those who are living quiet, church-like lives to those who are involved in various criminal activities.
“What I enjoy most is seeing folks smile getting saved and turning their life around,” Allen said.
But the devoted minister knows that not everyone is able to receive the message.
“I’ve buried folks that I preached to and and that hurts so much for me to see,” he said. “But I always go to the word of God and even though I may feel sorry I’m grateful that God did allow me to preach to them and witness to them.”
By Kaila Heard