214 – August, 02 – This Day in Baptist History Past



A grandmother prays her grandson into the ministry

Dr. Stephen Gano was ordained into the gospel ministry on August 2, 1786, by his father, uncle, and several other pastors in the Gold Street Baptist church of N.Y. City. After two brief but successful pastorates in 1792, he received a unanimous invitation to the pastorate of the First Baptist Church in Providence, R.I., where he served until his death. When he became pastor, the church numbered 165 members; however, during the thirty-six years of his ministry there, five new churches were born, and the membership of the First Baptist Church grew to 647. First Baptist Church of Providence was one of the largest Baptist congregations in America and experienced frequent revival. In 1820 alone they saw 147 baptized. Dr. Gano was a stellar leader who served the Warren Association as its moderator for nineteen years. Stephen was born on Dec. 25, 1762, in New York City, where his father, John Gano, was pastor. His uncle James Manning was the President of Brown University where his parents planned to send Stephen until his father entered the army as a chaplain, and thirteen-year old Stephen had to go live with his uncle, Dr. Stites, to be educated as a doctor. While on the way, he and his father stopped at his grandmother’s house. She placed her hand on Stephen’s head prayed for his salvation, and also that God would call him to preach the everlasting gospel and “be faithful unto death that he may win the crown of life.” Stephen did become a doctor and entered the army as a surgeon before he was saved. He served aboard a ship, was taken prisoner and was in a prisoner exchange. He died on August 18, 1828.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 31617.

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