Mark Smith, Minister of Administration & Children’s Ministries
The Lord blessed me with two faithful Christian parents who made church a priority in my home throughout my childhood. This regular exposure to the preaching and teaching of the Bible, as well as my parents’ intentionality in teaching me to pray, read the Bible, and repent, were the means by which God brought conviction and faith to me. I accepted Christ as a child and was baptized several months after making my profession of faith. During college, I sensed a growing desire for pastoral work and began training for vocational ministry. My wife, Melissa, and I moved to Louisville immediately after our wedding as I continued that training at Southern Seminary. The Lord has blessed us with two sons, Micah and Gabriel. Our family has been at Clifton since we came to Louisville, and I have had the privilege of serving on staff since September of 2012.
Lucas Almeida, Minister of Music
I was blessed to have grown up in a Christian home, where the gospel was ever present. I do not know the exact age I became saved, but I do remember certain events from my childhood that can give me good parameters. At around the age of five, I remember my parents teaching me about the reality hell. I was in shock, and certain that I deserved such a place. Although I was a child, I was already fully aware of my depravity and the desperate need I had of a redeemer. My parents however, also taught me about the truth of the gospel and the hope of eternal life I could find in Jesus Christ. At around the age of 6, I made a profession of faith. After that my parents (especially my father) began working with me to further understand what it meant to be a Christian and to live in light of the gospel.
Darla Wilkinson, Office Manager
My parents served in vocational ministry where I heard the gospel of Christ as a child. I responded to God’s work in my heart early in life, but at the age of eighteen I made a firm public profession that I was a sinner who needed the salvation only Christ could give. I continued to grow in my relationship with the Lord as a young adult, and, later, while serving in international student ministry I sensed the Lord calling me to prepare for a ministry of Christian counseling. I went to Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary for training. And for the last decade I have enjoyed the privilege of working with women in both the church and parachurch organizations, helping them realize the truth and grace of Christ during the trials of life. My husband, Michael, and I moved to Louisville in 2013 for him to continue his training at Southern Seminary. We began attending Clifton soon after our arrival to the city. And the Lord blessed me with the opportunity to begin serving on staff in May 2014.
Heather Bertram, Nursery Coordinator
I was blessed to grow up in a Christian home and became a believer at the age of 8. My husband, Mike, and I have been members at Clifton since 2003. We are blessed with four children: Micah, Abby, Haley, and Owen. It is such a joy to be at a church like Clifton and it is an amazing privilege to serve the body as the Nursery Coordinator.