Learning to stand at New Horizon

Revival-goers at New Horizon Outreach Ministries fall to the floor during the last day of a two-day revivival last Friday and Saturday at the church. Leading the revival was Evangelist Ernest White.

Alex Sanchez/Special to the Guardian
Published: Wednesday, September 4, 2013 at 2:45 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, September 4, 2013 at 2:45 p.m.

When a young girl began to act out before Evangelist Ernest White of South Carolina started his sermon Saturday night at a revival at New Horizon Outreach Ministries, he asked the adult with the child to bring her to the altar because the devil was trying to get her to miss a blessing.



* Pastor: Co-Pastors Michael and Crystal Griffin.

* Location: 127 NE 15th St.

* Services: Sunday School is 10:30 a.m., followed by morning worship at 11:30 a.m. and evening worship at 6:30 p.m. Bible study is 7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday.

* Phone: 352-281-7685.

He asked the girl what was wrong with her, and when she told him she was not in any physical pain, but just a little upset about nothing, White told parishioners packed into the small white church at 127 NE 15th St. that the girl was experiencing a spiritual attack from the devil.

"She is not in pain, she is just discouraged," White said. "That's a spirit."

At that moment, the holy ghost entered the church in a big way and loosened the yoke that the devil had on the girl after White prayed for and laid hands on her. While the girl lay stretched out on the floor at the altar, White told Pastor Crystal Griffin, who co-pastors the church with her husband, Pastor Michael Griffin, to put oil on the foreheads of all of the children in the church.

After the girl got through shaking the devil off, she hugged White and went back to her seat with a big smile on her face. White then told the Griffins and members of New Horizon to do something special for the girl and the rest of the children in the church.

"That's all children need, just a little love," White said.

White, who founded Ambassadors for Christ in Gainesville nearly 15 years ago before moving to Charleston, S.C., was the speaker at a two-night revival held Friday and Saturday at New Horizon.

During his sermon Saturday night, he educated parishioners packed into the church about what they need to do to stand firm and on solid ground while they are engulfed in spiritual warfare with the devil.

However, before he delivered his sermon, the atmosphere was set by several performers, including praise dance performances by Jeannette Climpson of New Beginnings Christian Church in Micanopy and Righteousness for Christ, a trio of teen praise dancers from New Horizon. There also was a mime praise dance performed by Prophetess Tameika Greenlee.

All of the performances drew shouts of joy and praises to the Lord from parishioners who encouraged the performers to give their all. "Y'all better do it" was commonly shouted during the performances.

Michael Griffin introduced White, as he referred to him as his father in ministry. He said he remembers standing around the St. Francis House in downtown Gainesville on Christmas Eve some years ago feeling sorry for himself and wanting to change the direction his life was headed. He said it was that night that White showed him a tremendous amount of love and put a word from God in his heart that led to him becoming a man of God.

"I thank God for this man of God," said Griffin, who founded New Horizon with his wife in 2006 to reach people where they are. "He taught me so much. He taught me how to never give up on folks. That's why I do what I do on this corner because he put it inside of me to keep going. Many folks we see walking up and down (Northeast) 1st Avenue, they have been drinking or in the dope house, and we are the first ones that want to give up on them. We are the first ones that want to talk about them, but I thank God he didn't talk about me. He reached out his hand to me, and I don't know about you, but that man deserves a standing ovation from me and more."

The title of White's sermon was "I Will Stand." He preached from Ephesians 6:10-14. He said when Christians get to the point where they are "finally" ready to stand strong in their faith in the Lord, they will begin to live better. He said in order for Christians to get to that point, they must attend Bible study and Sunday school.

"Churches must be prepared to fight the enemy," White said. "You need Bible study and Sunday school to be able to keep you strong."

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