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Faith Bible Church celebrating two big anniversaries


September 05, 2012
LITTLETON — Faith Bible Church has two anniversaries this year. The church, at 355 Union Street, has welcomed people for 35 years. Pastor Malcom Starring, "Mac," as he likes to be called, has served the church since 1987.

"Pastor is what I do," he said. "Mac is who I am."

Last week we talked with Mac about the church and his path to Littleton. Now 61, he finds it hard to believe how quickly 25 years have passed in town. "I never thought I'd be the Old Man of the Mountain," Mac said with a smile.

On Sunday, September 9, the church will be marking its 35th anniversary. Twenty-one people were present at the church's first service on September 11, 1977. About 200 now attend the church's two Sunday services.

Mac said that the church puts the focus on the message of Jesus. Mac believes this is the core of the church's mission. He says that church cannot put form over substance. While stressing the Christ-centered message, Mac says he can best serve his members and others.

He remembers a January day in 1987 when he got a call to ask about his interest in becoming pastor in Littleton. Mac was mowing his yard in Texas in 80-degree weather that day. He was soon in Littleton during a very cold winter. Mac remembers temperatures in the North Country of 30 below zero soon after leaving Texas.

He arrived with his wife, three kids, a dog, and a cat. The family now includes five grandchildren.

Mac and his family made it to Littleton after six years in France, followed by a short time in East Texas. He taught at a small bible college that closed four months after the family's arrival. He found out about the loss of his job on New Year's Eve 1985. The following year was "a time of real testing for my faith," Mac said.

Then, the call came to join Faith Bible Church. Although quite a change from Texas, Mac said "I knew God wanted us here."

Over the years, Mac has presided over the church's steady membership growth. But he does not want to put his focus on the number of seats he can fill. "Nobody comes to a church," Mac said. "The church comes to the building." He enjoys seeing the church family that has essentially grown up together in many ways.

Mac said his work as a counselor at the church can be hard, but also very rewarding. The challenge of helping those in need "brings opportunity to see God change people's lives," he noted. He loves the ability to help people work through the demanding times of life.

With so many challenges in the world, Mac suggested that people can "give Jesus a careful examination." His lessons are a wonderful way to help people see the good that can happen in the world, he said.

People can both hurt and heal at the church, Mac said. "There's a lot of bad stuff in the world," he noted, but fellowship and a focus on the message of Jesus serves to mend hurting hearts.

Much may have changed in Littleton since Faith Bible Church started 35 years ago. But Mac believes that the universal message of Jesus can assist people trying to navigate the difficulties in their lives.

Garnett Hill
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