HomeChurchFirst Baptist Atlanta Ministry...

First Baptist Atlanta Ministry Shines the Light of Jesus in the Streets

It began with the call of God.

Light Up the Dark Buckhead, a street evangelism ministry of First Baptist Church of Atlanta that serves Buckhead, Ga. on Friday nights, was formed in 2000 by executive director, Karen Norrell. It took a hiatus in 2003 for thirteen years and re-launched in 2016.

Norrell was divinely inspired from a message that the Lord delivered her as she and her friends were reading the Left Behind series to form Light Up the Dark Buckhead in 2000.

“We started a Bible study to learn what God was saying,” Norrell told Atlanta Christian Voice. “We prayed and heard God say, ‘I’m coming back again. Go and tell somebody.’ As I was praying through the different opportunities, I heard God say, ‘Go where the Gospel is not preached.”

There were 32 professions of faith in the year 2000 from the relationships, according to Light Up the Dark Buckhead statistics.

Light Up the Dark Buckhead ministers to people who go to bars on Friday nights in the city of Buckhead. As a ministry, Norell and other members get to know the valets, security guards and other bar attendees.

Getting to know the community of Buckhead at the bars allows for the Holy Spirit of God to work and led in the relationships that are established. There were 32 professions of faith in the year 2000 from the relationships, according to Light Up the Dark Buckhead statistics.

“I just was a part of a team that walked the streets,” Light Up the Dark Buckhead member, Cyndy Baker said. “We walked the streets and talked to homeless people and all kinds of people and passed out tracks. To me, it was cool when someone accepted Christ.”

This group of people are the unreached people group of Light Up the Dark Buckhead.

“We got to know the people over time,” Norell told Atlanta Christian Voice. “They became our primary mission field.”

One of the people who Norrell got to know through Light Up the Dark Buckhead, Selena, was eventually a person that she mentored.

“The impact comes from a person showing up every Friday night. Consistency is the key. We are there to show people that there is a different way to live your life.”  William Todd

Selena was a University of Georgia student who accepted Christ shortly before she met Norrell at one of the clubs in Buckhead. She mentally and spiritually grew as Norell planted the seed of Christ in her and her relationship with the Lord grew.

Over time, Selena gave up unbiblical practices, such as dressing provocatively. She later gave up her job as a promotor at the club.

“The impact is not on the person showing up [at the bars],” Light Up the Dark Buckhead member, William Todd told Atlanta Christian Voice. “The impact comes from a person showing up every Friday night. Consistency is the key. We are there to show people that there is a different way to live your life.”

Another person who Norrell encountered through Light Up the Dark Buckhead, Jennifer, accepted Jesus Christ as her personal Lord and Savior quickly because of Norrell sharing her testimony with her.

“I was able to talk to the young girl of what Jesus did through me to heal me and she received Christ that same night,” Norrell said.

For Baker, the most exciting part of the ministry is when someone becomes a Christian.

“It’s exciting for when somebody accepts Christ for the first time,” Baker told Atlanta Christian Voice. “It makes you want to go back and do it again.”

For Todd, the most exciting part of serving with Light Up the Dark Buckhead is submitting to the will of God as His Holy Spirit leads members to witness.

“If you are thinking about joining a ministry, you need to do what it takes for God to accomplish his will,” Todd said. “You have to ask yourself if you have the faith that it takes to be in a ministry.

To find out more about Light Up the Dark Buckhead’s ministry, visit www.fba.org.

- A word from our sponsors -


Most Popular

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be the first to.know what's happening in the Christian community

More from Author

To Be Fruitful and Multiply, in the Name of Jesus Christ

January 19-25, 2020 is Sanctity of Human Life week, which honors human life at birth, before birth and while the baby is still in the mother’s womb. January 22, 2020 is National Sanctity of Human Life Day

North Point InsideOut Elevates to Next Level as Nationally-Renowned Band

Christian contemporary worship band, North Point InsideOut, formed from the North Point Community Church high school ministry, InsideOut, in 1995. Tts ministry target has grown from high school students in the local Alpharetta, Ga. area to people across the country.

Divine Inspiration and the Bible Attribute to Founding of Berry College in 1902

Berry College is one of the top liberal arts colleges in the United States of America, according to the Berry College website statistics.

- A word from our sponsors -


Regent Students Choose God During Spring Break

Regent University in Virginia experienced the call of the Holy Spirit during an outpouring of spiritual renewal.

France Celebrates Bible Month

This year's theme is "Solidarity in the light of the Bible" and more than 200 bookstores and libraries are joining.

New Women’s Audio Bible Launched in the UK

The first-ever audio Bible recorded solely by UK women launched on March 8, coinciding with International Women's Day.

Notre Dame to Re-open in December 2024

French officials announced that one of the country's most iconic buildings will welcome visitors and faithful by December 2024.

Pilgrimages Can Help Unchurched Travelers

A travel website predicts that pilgrimages will be one of the biggest travel trends in 2023.

Ukraine Christians Are On The Rise Amid War

It's been a year since Russia invaded Ukraine, but in the middle of the destruction, more Ukrainians cling to Jesus Christ.

Asbury Revival Spreads to Other Christian Universities

As Asbury University closes revival services to the general public, the nonstop worship phenomenon has reached other universities in the U.S.

Asbury Revival Attracts Thousands, Moves Services Off Campus

The small town of Wilmore, Kentucky suddenly became host to an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 people who joined the Asbury Revival.

Samaritan’s Purse Delivers 200 Millionth Shoebox Gift

Samaritan's Purse reached a new milestone in delivering its 200 millionth shoebox.

Churches Open Doors for Survivors of Turkey Quake

After two major earthquakes hit Turkey on February 6, churches opened its doors to provide shelter and basic supplies to survivors.

Christians Send Help to Turkey and Syria Following Quake

Christian organizations immediately mobilized to help survivors of the devastating earthquake in Turkey and Syria.

Over 7,000 Came to Jesus in 3 Weeks of Winter Jam 2023

More than 7,000 people surrendered their lives to Jesus Christ in just three weeks of Winter Jam 2023.