Often God allows something to affect his children, like Paul's "thorn in the flesh," and, though we often times cannot see the reason, God has one. He is constantly seeking to perfect us and give us greater opportunity to bring Him glory. Bruce and Vicki Kelly are shining examples of this. They have taken their deafness and turned it into a great avenue to bring souls to the Master, reaching out to the Deaf in America and in many parts of the world.
My name is Bruce Alan Kelly, and I was born deaf. My mother sent me to a hearing church for almost five years, but I didn't understand because I didn't have an interpreter. So, I stopped going to church until I was thirteen years old when someone invited me to come to a church that had a deaf ministry. I was thinking about the hearing church in my past, so I was not interested in the church because it was very boring because I could not hear the preacher. My friend explained to me that they had an interpreter, so I decided to go to this hearing church. I went to Palm Springs Drive Baptist Church in Orlando, Florida.
A deaf man explained to me about the plan of salvation and I understood clearly and accepted Jesus Christ at age thirteen. That moment, my life was changed. Before my life felt so empty, but now I was changed from darkness to light. I was so happy Jesus loves me. Now I understand why I am deaf, because God wants me deaf so I can tell other deaf people about Gospel of Jesus Christ. I hate to see deaf people to go to the hell without the blood of Jesus Christ. I went to Bill Rice Ranch at the age of fifteen, and God touched my heart to become full time servant for Him through one deaf evangelist.
After I graduated from high school, I went to Jr College then I was able to go to Trinity Baptist College and graduate in 1990 with Degree in Theology. I became pastor for the Deaf at Greater Portland Baptist Church in Portland, Oregon in January 1994. A few years later, God began to work in my heart about becoming a missionary for the Deaf. So I resigned as pastor for the Deaf in September of 1997 and moved to Atlanta, Georgia. I have started Deaf Baptist Church, and the goal is to have the Deaf to be able to support a pastor full time which probably will take about ten years. Deaf people "'t earn as much money as hearing people do, and a lot of them are on welfare, for it is very hard for them find job.
Bruce's wife, Vicki Kelly, is also deaf. She has been a great help and asset to Bruce, aiding him in his ministry to the Deaf for over twenty years. Her testimony follows:
My name is Vicki Kelly. I was born deaf and have a deaf brother who is a pastor for the Deaf at Trinity Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida. I was saved at the age of eighteen, and, after I graduated from high school, I went to the National Technical Institute for the Deaf under Rochester Institute of Technology in New York. It was there that I knew the Lord wanted me serve him full time. A few years later I married Bruce (we are from same place – Orlando, Florida) on September 6, 1986. We have three wonderful sons, Paul, Timothy and John.