North Bay SDA Church's Green Thumb Ministry: Sharing Jesus, One Plant at a Time

Published on September 17, 2023

In March 2020, at the start of the pandemic, members of North Bay SDA Church of Southport, FL began to use their green thumbs to share Jesus. In the spring of each year since, the ministry has continued. And because it was well received by the community, this year, it was held in the spring and the fall.

On September 17, 2023, church members gave away 1600 tomato, cucumber, lettuce and zucchini plants that church members nurtured in the two months prior.

According to Omar Montilla, pastor of North Bay SDA Church, preparing for the plant giveaway and carrying it out required at least two months of work, from planting the seeds in trays to growing the seedlings, to transferring those seedling to individual pots and nurturing them during their growth.

On the day of the giveaway, the whole church threw themselves wholeheartedly into the work. The deacons welcomed visitors in the parking lot, while the deaconesses distributed plants they had grown over the previous months.

After community members collected about eight different plants, they were invited to take a tour of the church and to build friendships with local church members.

The visitors were also offered Bible studies and welcomed to come back to the church for both the gardening class that will take place in October and the health seminar in November.

Now, the plant giveaway is a mainstay in North Bay’s outreach because of its ability to meet a specific need in the community while energizing the church’s ministries to work collectively.

For more information about this event, please contact Pastor Omar Montilla at