Growing up in Rosario, Argentina, I received my first camera, as a gift, when I was 6. Since then, I have always loved to take pictures. I guess you could say I have two passions in life: taking pictures and serving others.
I came to know the Lord three years ago through the ministry of the Compañerismo Cristiano Foursquare Church in Downey, Calif. The Lord has opened doors that have allowed me to serve Him in the community where I own a machine shop in Bellflower, Calif.
I volunteer my services as an amateur photographer, and my pictures regularly appear in the city's bilingual newsletter, Vista, as well as The Bridge, a newsletter published by the Chamber of Commerce. The city notifies me when there are special community events, celebrations or activities, such as the annual city parade, and I provide them with digital pictures that are used for city publications.
Each year I am invited to take pictures at an annual event in honor of the city workers, which include the police, firefighters and other city officials. On occasion I have also been able to do "undercover" work with the police to help reduce tagging (graffiti) by local gangs in the area. I park my truck at a safe distance and then mount a telephoto lens on the steering wheel and snap pictures, which the police are able to use. They always let me know of their appreciation when a picture I have taken has been helpful in providing them with needed evidence.
In my church, I serve as the "unofficial" church photographer. I take pictures of the baptisms at our monthly baptismal services, which are then given to the individuals along with their baptism certificates. We also present pictures to parents as they dedicate their children to the Lord. I've taken pictures at our church's youth retreats, married couple's retreats and seminars, men's and women's meetings, church anniversaries and other special celebrations.
I love to do what I do. I receive such satisfaction in using the abilities the Lord has given me to serve others. I love to serve.
I love it when I am able to capture just the right moment on film and then see the expression on the face of a mother when she receives the photo of her child in a Christmas or Easter play or some other special moment that will be remembered for years to come.
I have never charged for my time or for my pictures. People may say I have given away a lot. But I would say I have received much more than I have given.
The machine shop I own was a miracle from the Lord. My business has prospered beyond what I could have hoped for. The people I've met and the relationships that have been established are blessings from God. I have asked a lot from the Lord, and He has always answered.
If you ask me if it's worth it to live a lifestyle of serving others, my answer would be that I wouldn't have it any other way.
By: Giovanni Corso (translated into English with Steve Galvan, Greater Los Angeles District)