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We're grateful for Celeste Jenkins sharing her story with us. Celeste is one of three generations of the Jenkins family at Sanctuary -- what a gift!


It has been an interesting year for me as I’ve tried to adjust to moving to Columbus and find a new church home.

I started visiting Sanctuary with my son and his family. A multiethnic church was new to me as I’ve always attended churches with predominantly Black populations. The Methodist church I attended when I was growing up had only one white member and he was the church organist. The Baptist church I attended when I moved to Cincinnati had one white couple. Still, a multiethnic church appealed to me because of what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said about Sunday being the most segregated day of the week, with races worshipping separately. 

I thought if we’re all going to be in heaven together, then why can’t we worship and serve God together here on earth? 

I thought it was worth a try.

Everyone was welcoming and nice at Sanctuary and the sermons were good and biblical, but it was hard for me to get used to the music. I would tell the Lord as I was coming to church, “Lord, I like the people I’m meeting. I like the preached Word, but I’m not crazy about the music! Can I stay at a church where I don’t like the music?” 

I kept asking Him about this. One Sunday, God answered my question as we sang the first worship song. The praise leader said something like, “You may not like the music, you may not like the song, but we’ve come here to worship God! We’ve come to praise God! We might not have ANY music!  We should always have some praise!” 

All I could do was say, “Yes, Lord,” and ask for forgiveness.

The Lord had to remind me I had lost my focus, I had forgotten my reason for belonging to ANY body of believers! I got a new appreciation for that song that says, “I’m sorry, Lord, for the things I’ve made it (worship), It’s all about you… it’s all about you, Jesus.” I sing robustly, now, focusing on worship.

Since then, the Lord has led me to work with RCK for a while, become an usher, join the Wednesday Bible Study, and take part in an Emotionally Healthy Spirituality group; all of which are showing me the value of and appreciation for different perspectives and ways of doing things.

I thank God for putting me in a place where people love the Lord and love to serve Him in the community. I thank God for continuing to work in my life and growing me in grace and knowledge of Him.