Dr. Adrian Ninaber

Local church gets new roof as part of ongoing restoration

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

A historic church is undergoing more restoration work with more work planned for the future.

Lighthouse Church has a new roof thanks to donations and the work of a roofing company that is comprised of members of the pastor’s family.

The pastor – Dr. Adrian Ninaber – said the church received funding from the Baptist Building Fund to help with the new metal roof. Lighthouse Church received a grant of $12,200, half of which they have to pay back. They also raised $38,000 through fundraising.

“When I came here, I think we had $10-11,000 in the roof fund,” said Ninaber.

Ninaber said they have been receiving help from the entire community, including an anonymous $5,000 donation.

“That kind of blew us away,” he said.

A Leamington church also donated $1,000 and other donations have been collected from people simply walking up and agreeing to help.

“It’s just amazing the money that is coming in,” said Ninaber.

The church, which was built in 1875, still has its original cedar shake roof on it and the new roof will go over that. A previous metal roof that had been repeatedly patched has been removed.

“It’s good to get things done and show the community we’re not dying,” said Ninaber, who said a recent service had 60 people in attendance. “We went from a church with a ‘For Sale’ sign up and a dilapidated roof to a church that is growing with a new roof.”

Dr. Adrian Ninaber, pastor at Lighthouse Church, stands outside the church as a new roof was being put on. The new roof is part of ongoing restoration work being performed.

Lighthouse Church is attracting enough people, he said, that alternative measures have had to be used to find more parking for parishioners.

“It’s a nice problem to have,” said Ninaber.

The church, which offers Sunday services at 10:30 a.m., has also replaced two doors on the building and will soon be installing new windows to replace some that sustained damage several years ago.

“We’re going to have them replaced in the next few weeks,” Ninaber said of the windows.

Lights on the steeple were also recently replaced and painting will take place around the steeple once better weather hits. The community room was also renovated as were washrooms.

“Little by little, bit by bit, we’re getting it up to speed,” Ninaber said of the church building.

Once building upgrades are completed, Ninaber said the church wants to take a greater look at community projects. He said he wants Lighthouse Church to be an integral part of the community.

“I want to focus on what the needs of the community are so we can get behind it and help out,” said Ninaber. “We want to reach out to the community and help with its needs.”

Lighthouse Church is located at 266 King St., at the corner of Gore St. To reach them, call 519-962-9525, e-mail lighthouse.amherstburg@gmail.com or visit www.lighthouseamherstburg.com.

Lighthouse Church spreads Christmas cheer with turkey dinner

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Lighthouse Church opened its doors to its neighbours and spread some Christmas cheer at the same time.

The local church held a turkey dinner with residents in the area as well as parishioners invited to attend. Pastor Adrian Ninaber said they planned for roughly 77 guests but estimated they ended up having about 85.

“There’s nothing like a church dinner,” he said.

The turkey dinner was accompanied by homemade side dishes and desserts with the meal designed to boost the spirit of the season and spread fellowship among people in the community. Ninaber said he has held similar dinners at other churches he has been at.

Lighthouse Church hosted a Christmas dinner shortly before the holiday season. Helping to serve were (from left): Susie Neufeld, Rose Ninaber, Lyn Cadarette, Sharron Renaud, Mary Beth Achilles, Wanda Lawhead and Paul Waffle.

“It’s something I’ve always done,” he said. “It’s always a nice way of getting people in the community together.”

Ninaber said he plans on making it an annual event. The meal was joined by trivia, a movie and music with Ninaber’s wife Rose and a team of volunteers helping to present the night.

“We’ll always do a Christmas dinner,” he said.

They also collected canned goods and non-perishable food items for the Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission as a way to give back to the community.

Ninaber added that Lighthouse Church is growing, stating that about 15 people would attend Sunday services when he started in June with that number growing to 85 now.

“We’re seeing new families every week,” he said.

A new roof is expected to be put on the church early in 2018, Ninaber added.

Lighthouse Church is located at 266 King St., at the corner of Gore St.

Local church offering program to help people going through a divorce

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Those going through a divorce can soon turn to a local church for assistance.

Lighthouse Church will be offering a program known as “Divorce Care” and it is a support group that originated in North Carolina in the early 1990’s and has now grown internationally. It is run by Pastor Adrian Ninaber and his wife Rose Ninaber and will run every Wednesday night starting Sept. 20.

“It’s a 13-week program,” explained Rose. “It’s geared towards those who are divorced or separated.”

Rose added that the program assists people who suddenly find themselves facing the end of their marriage and compared the feelings to someone who goes to a town that has been hit by a tornado.

“That’s kind of what divorce does to your life,” she said. “It’s like a tornado hitting you.”

The program allows people to plot a course on where they go from there, including guiding people through their anger, depression and loneliness. There are also seminars on how it affects children and a person’s finances. While a marriage might not be able to be fixed, there are also ways to forgive and reconcile as the two people in the estranged marriage could still see each other for a long time afterward.

“It’s a co-ed program,” said Adrian. “We have strict rules – no dating. If you are looking to date, sayonara.”

Most people don’t approach the Divorce Care group as an opportunity to meet someone new, he added, as it is designed to help people through what they are experiencing in a divorce.

Both Rose and Adrian agree that it is nice that it is a co-ed program, as women and men get to see what both sides experience.

“It gives an appreciation of what the other gender is going through,” said Adrian.

There are confidentiality agreements so that people can come in and open up about what they are feeling and be assured it won’t be spread outside the group.

“We want to keep the confidentiality so they can come and share,” said Rose.

Rose and Pastor Adrian Ninaber of Lighthouse Baptist Church will be conducting a Divorce Care program every Wednesday night for 13 weeks. The program starts Sept. 20.

Rose and Pastor Adrian Ninaber of Lighthouse Baptist Church will be conducting a Divorce Care program every Wednesday night for 13 weeks. The program starts Sept. 20.

The sessions run each Wednesday evening from 7-8:30 p.m. with three 30-minute segments. Rose said people often start out such groups as strangers but end up as friends. There is a cost of $20, with that covering the workbook each person receives and gets to keep. Class sizes average about eight to ten people and Rose said people can step in at any time, even if they have missed a few weeks.

“I went through a divorce in 1998 and I took this course,” Rose stated. “That’s why I’m so passionate about it. It helped me a great deal. There is life after divorce.”

Adrian said it is often recommended that people don’t immediately go into another relationship right after their marriage ends as they could bring “baggage” into a new relationship.

“Don’t jump into another relationship without processing everything that’s happened to you,” said Adrian. “They need to work through the process of grieving and hurt until they are whole again.”

Divorce Care is a network of over 15,000 churches worldwide equipped to house divorce support groups. The program is non-denominational and is described as featuring practical information and biblical teaching for recovering from divorce or separation.

For more information, contact 519-962-9525 or visit www.divorcecare.org. Lighthouse Church is located at 266 King St., at the corner of Gore St.

“Powerlifting Pastor” now at Lighthouse Church

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

There is a new pastor at Lighthouse Church and his name is Dr. Adrian Ninaber.

He also has the nickname of the “Powerlifting Pastor.”

Ninaber became the new pastor at the church June 4. His most previous stop was Harvest Bible Chapel in Windsor, a church with 600 members. He said his first service had about 35 people, but noted he plans on building up the church’s membership.

“I’ve grown to like Amherstburg,” said Ninaber.

Ninaber, who lives in LaSalle, said he came to Amherstburg for a fireworks show and liked the community-oriented environment.

“The community is excellent,” he said, noting he has already met many people in town including other faith leaders. “It’s a great community. I’ve just really enjoyed meeting people. I’ve never been in a community where people walk up to you and engage you in such a friendly way. It’s awesome.”

Ninaber has spent the last 35 years as a pastor and has done so from the Maritimes to British Columbia.

“I’ve pastored across Canada,” he said, adding the last 23 years has been spent in his home province of Ontario. He was born in Barrie and grew up in the Bramalea/Brampton area.

In addition to being a pastor, Ninaber also lifts weights competitively. He will be heading to the national championships in Columbus, Missouri June 25.

Dr. Adrian Ninaber is the new pastor at Lighthouse Church. He began his new position June 4.

Dr. Adrian Ninaber is the new pastor at Lighthouse Church. He began his new position June 4.

“They call me the ‘Powerlifting Pastor’,” he said. “When I go down to the water, I pick up the anchor for kicks.”

Ninaber said he started weightlifting in high school and it stopped other kids from picking on him. It also boosted his self-esteem.

“Weightlifting gave me a sense of confidence and authority,” he said.

After letting weightlifting go for several years, he hit the gym again in the early 1990’s and also trains other people to lift. His best squat is 500 pounds, his best deadlift is 600 pounds and his top bench press is 365 pounds.

Through weightlifting, he has also helped other men through life difficulties as they would go for coffee after training in the gym and discuss their life issues and difficulties.

“I believe following God is a discipline and lifting weights is a discipline,” said Ninaber.

In addition to Sunday services, Ninaber said he and wife Rose will offer grief and divorce recovery programs. He said he has run similar programs in the area already and has met people from Amherstburg.

The church was for sale, he added, but stated it is now off the market. The church has raised $11,000 towards a new roof and Ninaber said he has spoken with a Christian businessman who is also willing to donate.
Noting he has helped smaller churches with renovation projects in the past, Ninaber said he plans on continuing that at Lighthouse Church and his three sons – Josh, Jonathan and Joel – will help him put the new roof on the church.

Lighthouse Church is located at 266 King St., at Gore St.