Summit Church’s mission is to glorify God by making disciples who can share the Gospel to every man, woman and child.
With three locations — two in Fort Myers and one in Naples — Summit Church has an average of more than 2,100 people attend its services on a weekly basis. Summit Church has always been outwardly focused and committed to reaching into the community to help families and children in need.
In 2008 staff from Florida Baptist Children’s Homes spoke at a service and held a class about adoption and foster care at Summit. That visit turned out to be transformative in the life of the church congregation.
As a result, 41 families have become licensed in foster care and adoption, 103 children have been placed in homes of church members and 12 of those children were adopted.
Pastor Jamin Stinziano became so invested in the mission to help children that he became one of the committed foster parents and has had eight children placed in his home over the course of the last five years.
The care and compassion for vulnerable children quickly became contagious at Summit and the church is excited to let its love overflow.
Summit is going to spread love and hope in new ways by launching their Every Child Initiative, which offers education and opportunities for families to get involved in adoption, foster care or wrap-around families.
While adoption provides the dream of a forever family for a child and foster care provides a loving temporary home, wrap-around families provide tangible ways to work alongside adoptive and foster families.
Wrap-around care offers resources and strong support systems so that those called to be adoptive and foster parents can take a time-out once in a while and enjoy free assistance such as childcare, tutoring, meals and services like mowing lawns, cleaning, laundry and handyman help.
“We are deeply committed to helping vulnerable children by utilizing every opportunity to allow people to hear and respond to the gospel,” Stinziano said. “We invite FBCH to speak from the pulpit and educate our congregation about opportunities to help children, we allow people to share their personal stories through videos and we have worship prayer nights.”
Terry Hartz, Southwest Florida Director of Foster Care for FBCH and member of Summit Church, believes that reaching families and children in need is a part of the DNA at Summit.
“When I see all of the families that I work with day in and day out, I know that God has called on the people of Summit to do this exceptional work,” she said.
Summit’s creativity in including the talents of all people, in support of those called to be adoptive and foster parents, allows many volunteers to work toward a common goal: helping the plight of vulnerable children.