Church hopes to draw more families

Darrell Todd Maurina

Calvary Baptist Church of Portales normally has about 50 people attending services, but its interim pastor, the Rev. Bobby Fuller, hopes to have three times that number this Sunday.
According to a church press release, July 20 will be “Family Roll Call Sunday” for the church.
Each member family at Calvary Baptist will have their name called and be given an opportunity to respond with stories or testimonies about what the family has done over the years, the release states. The church service will begin at 10:50 a.m. and a fellowship meal will follow the service.
The church is encouraging current or former church attenders not only to come themselves but also to bring extended family members and friends.
Fuller said he has heard of “family roll call” services in the past, but has never led one before. Part of the reason for holding the service this week is that his own children, who now live in the Texas communities of Cedar Hill and Dumas, will be coming with their spouses and seven grandchildren.
Fuller said some people in the Portales area may remember his son and daughter from when he pastored Dora Baptist Church from 1971 to 1976 and may want to meet them and their families.
“I’m planning on bringing all my family there,” Fuller said. “For folks at Dumas, some of them haven’t seen my family since we left in 1976.”
Fuller, who has served at Calvary Baptist’s interim pastor since March, said he enjoys doing part-time ministry in retirement, and likes being able to assist Calvary Baptist while it searches for a new pastor.
“It’s an older congregation, but it’s very loving,” Fuller said. “The ones who are there are very faithful, and they need someone to be their regular pastor.”
After nearly four decades in ministry, Fuller worked for a few years for the state of New Mexico and finally retired in 1991.
Retirement didn’t mean leaving the ministry, however — he has spent nearly every Sunday since then preaching in various churches and is now coordinating a boy’s camp during the week at Silvells Baptist Retreat and Conference Center south of Ruidoso.