Our Story:

Alvin and Charity’s story begins in 1997 on a youth group trip to the Brownsville Revival. Alvin (16) and Charity (14) knew they had experienced a life changing moment together at the revival, what they did not realize at the time was they had just met their future spouse! In 1999, they went their separate ways as Alvin left home to attend Southwestern Assemblies of God University to obtain his Bachelor’s degree in Church Ministry and then to attend Regent University to obtain his Master’s degree in Practical Theology. Meanwhile, Charity was completing her Bachelors of Science in Nursing. In 2006, they both returned home to Farmville after their graduations. Charity became a registered nurse at a local hospital and Alvin became the Young Adult Pastor at New Life Farmville. As Alvin prepared to launch this new ministry, Charity volunteered her assistance as a worship leader. By 2009 they were married, their first two children, Hannah (2011) and Elijah (2013) were born during their time of ministry in Farmville. While on staff at New Life, Alvin’s portfolio evolved to include many other responsibilities, such as: Outreach Coordinator, Adult Discipleship Coordinator, New Believer Assimilation, Missions Director, and Chi Alpha director of Longwood University & Hampden-Sydney College Chi Alpha. In March 2015 the Thomas’ moved to Blacksburg to prepare to launch Fireplace church. In addition to picking up part-time jobs and preparing to launch Fireplace Church, Alvin and Charity also welcomed their third child, Abigail, into their family.

Our Passions:

Pastor Alvin:

Family: I thoroughly enjoy my family! Charity and I had a lot of fun before kids, and now we have even more! I prioritize my family and our time together; they are my number one ministry.

Recreation: I am an outdoorsman! Whether it is fly-fishing, kayaking, hunting, hiking, going on walks with my family, running, camping, playing pick-up sports, or working on my father’s farm, I love being outdoors.

Ministry: A major passion of mine is equipping people to grow in the spiritual disciplines of prayer and Bible study. I believe that all other facets of church and family life will be empowered and advanced by the people of God as they encounter Him in both the secret place as well as in worship gatherings.

Favorite Scripture and Why: I don’t know whether I can say that I have just one favorite scripture, but 1 Thes. 2:10-12 is my life scripture. It says, “You are witnesses, and so is God, how devoutly and uprightly and blamelessly we behaved toward you believers; just as you know how we were exhorting and encouraging and imploring each one of you as a father would his own children, so that you would walk in a manner worthy of the God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.”

When I was 18 this passage jumped off that page when I read it, and I knew this was who I was supposed to be.

Charity:

Family: We love spending time together as a family and enjoy going on mini-adventures together. Growing our marriage and raising our little disciples are our top priorities!

Recreation: I enjoy talking over a great cup of coffee either at home or at one of our local coffee shops. I love spending time outdoors whether it be walking, reading, or playing with the kids.

Ministry: I love to help people feel welcome and find their place in the body of Christ. I am also a passionate worshipper and desire to help people grow in their intimate relationship with God!

Favorite Scripture and Why: Ephesians 3:20 “Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations.”

This passage reminds me to not put limits on what God can do in and through us!