A weekly series that profiles various places of worship in Columbia County
Harlem Baptist Church Minister of Music Edee Sweatman (from left), Minister of Students Joshua Glymph and Pastor Philip Vestal stand in the church sanctuary.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
Harlem Baptist Church
Address: 105 W. Milledgeville Road
Services: Sunday morning Bible study, 9:45 a.m.; Sunday morning worship, 10:55 a.m.; Young Hope (youth Bible study), 6 p.m. Sunday and 7 p.m. Wednesday; Wednesday J.A.M. (children's Bible study), 7 p.m.; Wednesday Oasis (adult Praise and Prayer service), 7 p.m.; Sunday Crosswalk (adult Bible study), 5:45 p.m.
Pastor: Philip Vestal
Congregation size: 465
Membership: Most who attend are from Columbia County.
Known for: "(We are known for our) biblical and creative worship services, music program, youth and children programs, missions and being a family of faith," he said.
Music: The church offers contemporary and traditional music accompanied by a choir, soloists, ensembles piano and keyboard.
"HBC has a blended style of worship," he said.
What would you say to someone who's thinking about giving your church a try?
"HBC is a family of faith who cordially invites and welcomes anyone committed to Jesus Christ and his mission," he said. "We're not a perfect church, but we desire to glorify God in all we do. Our doors are wide open, and we would love to have you and your family come and experience HBC, up close and personal. We strive to be real, relevant and relational."
What do you believe is the biggest issue facing the faithful today?
"How to understand, embrace and impact the vast diversity in our culture, while at the same time maintaining an unwavering commitment to biblical principals," he said. "Through advancement in technology, media and travel, our world is becoming increasingly smaller, and all people of the world are connecting and even overlapping more and more each day. The church can either ignore that reality or find new and effective ways in reaching people with the gospel message of hope, faith and love."
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