Guiding Light was first established as West Fulton Mission in 1929 by a layman named John Van de Water. It began out of a need for meals for the unfortunate in the community.
Shortly after moving to its new location, Guiding Light started what would become one of the most important components of its program. After receiving its certification from the state, Guiding Light began offering treatment for those struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. This would eventually develop into the S.T.A.R.T. program. The program has continued to evolve and is now the New Life in Christ program.
The VanderVeers served faithfully until 1966 when Andrew died suddenly while delivering an evening chapel service. The following years were difficult for the Mission. Cornelia passed away in 1968; and, after a brief stay, the new director resigned. The board began seriously considering closing Guiding Light. In 1968 Guiding Light officially closed.
Guiding Light remained closed for one year until Jacob Vredevoog, an assistant to the VanderVeers, reopened Guiding Light as an independent faith project. He did this with his own money and with the support of local donors. Vredevoog served until 1972 and passed away.
Guiding Light was then led and expanded by a number of directors, including Edward Oosterhouse, Herm Koning, Lucky Hobson, and Chico Daniels. Under their leadership, Guiding Light outgrew its original location and was moved to its current location at 255 Division Ave S.
Today, Guiding Light continues to fulfill the mission set forth by its founders. We continue to provide services to the homeless and suffering while sharing the love of Christ with those in need. As we move into the future, our mission remains to provide recovery and re-engagement for those living at society’s margins.