Dennis and Shelia joined GFA in 1976, shortly before Dennis received his master's in theology from Bob Jones University. He met Shelia, a staff worker at BJU, while he attended summer school there in 1973, and they were married in 1974. Since they didn't feel a call to any particular foreign field, the director of GFA encouraged Dennis to pray about joining a family already in place in Indonesia. After much prayer, Dennis and Shelia began their deputation, sensing God was leading them to Indonesia. After 1 1/2 years of traveling, they received the required support to leave for the field. Though the finances were in hand, the necessary visas were not. Time dragged on. After waiting for a year, the Pottses received word from the missionary on the field that, due to Bro. Potts' military background of counter intelligence, they would not be granted a visa.
Having heard that there were three single girls in the Philippines who needed a pastor to work with, the Pottses were once again challenged to consider a new field. Again much prayer was needed to guide them in this decision. By January of 1979 all doubt and delay came to an end, and on February 7 of that year they arrived in their adopted country! When they landed on Filipino soil, they had two daughters in tow, Elisabeth, 3, and Lydia, 1. They later welcomed Tommy into their family on September 7, seven months to the day they arrived on the field. Five years later, during their first furlough, Julia was born on September 11, 1984. After their first year in the country, the Pottses felt led to take over a fledgling work in the Quezon City area.
Gospel Light Baptist Church was established in February 1980. The Pottses never imagined they would remain in an urban ministry for 30 years.
In the midst of expensive Metro Manila, it required 14 years to secure a lot (1994) and finally erect a building (1997). When Dr. Bob Jones Jr. dedicated the building on June 15, 1997, it truly was a day of joy and rejoicing. Now, by the grace and goodness of the Lord, the church family of Gospel Light is the steward of a 6-story building. This is home to not only the church but also to Gospel Light Christian Academy (begun June 1997) and Bob Jones Memorial Bible College (until completion of BJMBC’s own building). Many graduates have gone out from GLBC and established daughter churches elsewhere in the Philippines.
After Bro. Potts turned over the church to Gilbert Castillo in June 2009, he was involved in preaching evangelistic and revival messages at various churches. He also taught pastoral and local church subjects, not only at BJMBC but also at other Bible colleges in the Philippines
In 2015, after months of Bro. Potts’s health difficulties, the decision was made to transition to GFA’s “post-field-worker” status. While not in their beloved Philippines, he maintains his fervent quest to reach souls for the Lord.
To view Dennis and Sheila Potts' photo gallery, click the picture below.