NEW YORK—What a trip! Forty-nine senior saints have returned from a visit to California, where they toured Yosemite National Park, the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias, and the opulent Hearst Castle. Participants represented 21 churches in the Empire State Fellowship of Regular Baptist Churches, led by tour organizer Craig Golden, state representative for the fellowship. Other major attractions included Sugar Pine Railroad, the Monterey Bay Aquarium, San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf, and the infamous Alcatraz prison.
Craig Golden called the group “forty-niners,” likely a reference to the number of participants, not their age!
Though surrounded by spectacular scenery, tour participants described the trip’s highlight as a visit to the Sunday service of the Deaf Baptist Church in Fremont, Calif., where Baptist Church Planters Kevin and Kenyata Maki are serving. One senior described the emotional and uplifting visit a “million dollar experience” with believers who might not hear or speak but communicated friendliness and love in a big way.
“We ate scrumptiously, traveled luxuriously, and were treated royally like kings and queens,” Golden says. “We thank God for His goodness, His safety (some very curvy twisted cliff roads), and His many, many blessings.”
A senior shared how she grows spiritually on these trips similar to a kid going to camp for a week. Craig Golden compares these senior adventures to the wilderness trips that the younger generation enjoy, noting how the participants grow in their faith, dependence on God, and reliance on God.
“Although seeing these sights was super, the greatest delight comes from traveling with and experiencing the fellowship of these Christians who are ‘super’ senior saints,” says Craig Golden. “What a group!”