The Ballestero Blog

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God Answered Her Prayer

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God Answered Her Prayer

Fannie Thorne lived with a deep dark secret. She didn’t know who her biological father was. Her mother was also born out of wedlock. Now, two generations in a row had endured all the whispers and shunning of polite society.

Other members of Fannie’s family were religious. Very religious indeed! Two of her brothers were preachers in the Assemblies of God Church.

Fannie’s Grandmother had not been allowed to marry the father of her child because he was not of the same religion. He was a professional boxer. Actually, he was the World Champion Heavy Weight Boxer, Bob Fitzsimmons.

A kind and loving Mr. Thorne married Fannie’s mother and adopted baby Fannie, giving her a last name.

Fannie grew up going to church. Her family settled in the Fresno, California area. They attended a large Assemblies Of God Church pastored by the renowned Rev. Charles Price.

As Fannie grew into young womanhood, she attracted the fancy of a dashing Catholic boy named Charles. They fell in love. Fannie had to push aside her Spirit-filled Assemblies of God background to allow herself to be married to Charles.

Against her family’s arguments and disapproval, she married him anyway. Charles and Fannie lived in a nice big house on S. Main St. in Los Angeles, only twenty blocks from the Courthouse.

Two sons were born to them. The Birth Certificates certify that the oldest son was named Charley, and the youngest son is listed as Joseph.

Soon after little Joseph was born, Fannie discovered she had Tuberculosis. For several years she struggled to survive. The Doctors weren’t much help.

She was treated in a Sanatorium in Fresno for her sickness. It was there that she desperately prayed for God to heal her so that she might raise her children. Her boys were now six and four years old.

When she lay on her deathbed, at the age of twenty-six, her brothers and aunts heard her pray her last prayer to God.

“God, would you save my baby boy and make him a preacher?”

Young Fannie died and was buried in an unmarked grave in Mountain View Cemetery in Fresno, California.

The boys were raised as Catholics in spite of their mother’s prayers. Little Charley and Joseph became devout Catholics and attended a Catholic school. Their father turned to alcohol for solace after losing his young wife. He never remarried.

The constant drunkenness of their father caused the state to take the boys away from their Father and place them in Foster Care. Joseph was placed in fourteen different Foster homes. He ran away from eleven of them.

More than fifteen years later, young Joseph went down to the altar the first time he visited his mother’s old church in Fresno. God filled him wonderfully with the Holy Ghost and he spoke in tongues.

About four years later while in the U. S. Army, Joseph found Christ Church in Oregon City, Oregon and was baptized in Jesus Name by Pastor Andrew Baker. God called him into the ministry, and he willingly accepted.

Joseph preached all over America. He preached twenty-five years as a Pastor and twenty-five years as an Evangelist. He travelled and preached everywhere, until his body and health gave out.

His Birth Certificate only showed the name Joseph and his last name. You knew him as Carl Joseph Ballestero. I called him Daddy.

My Grandmother Fannie Ballestero lay in her grave for nearly twenty years until it happened. And then… God answered her prayer! Just like she prayed, God saved her baby boy and made him a preacher!



Fannie & Charles

Fannie & Charles

Written by Martyn Ballestero

October 29, 2013 at 11:32 pm

Posted in Prayer

Tagged with ,

13 Responses

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  1. How wonderful – tears of hope and also sympathy for your dear grandmother. Thank you for sharing. This story touched my heart on a very real and personal level.


    October 29, 2013 at 11:47 pm

  2. You have written so beautifully about God’s faithfulness to answer a young dying mother’s prayer. (Our beloved grandma) It brings tears to my eyes, knowing how far God will go to draw someone to Him. He’s a mighty prayer-answering God!

    Nila Marxer

    October 30, 2013 at 12:41 am

  3. I wasn’t here when your dad was the pastor at First Pentecostal Church of Sulphur, but I’ve heard great things about him. Love your preaching & hearing all your family stories. Love your Blog, keep it going.

    Silvie Guidry Sulphur, LA

    October 30, 2013 at 12:47 am

  4. What a tremendous testimony of the Providence of God and the prayers of a Mother. And what an answered prayer he truly was.

    Steve Epley

    October 30, 2013 at 3:18 am

  5. Wow. Such powerful encouragement as a testimony to God’s undying faithfulness. Thank you for sharing that piece of your story.

    Susan Jenkins Writer

    October 30, 2013 at 7:03 am

  6. Very interesting. Was that Wolfe Manor?

    Your family has a great legacy.


    October 30, 2013 at 8:41 am

  7. Bro. Ballestero,

    Wow! Thank you for sharing this incredible testimony.

    Eugene Wilson


    October 30, 2013 at 9:24 am

  8. An awesome story! Being true just makes it better.


    October 30, 2013 at 12:31 pm

  9. Awesome!! I love it.

  10. One of your best post Bro. Ballestero. Can’t wait for you to come back to Sebastopol MS.


    October 31, 2013 at 9:37 am

  11. Beautiful! I’m catching up and just read this beautiful story! I guess I owe a thank you to your grandmother Fannie! Her answered prayers are directly connected to my salvation! That preacher was my first pastor that threw me the lifeline!
    Thank you again!

    Dennis Morris

    November 2, 2013 at 10:51 pm

  12. Bro. Ballestero, what a wonderful story! I just read it and then read it again aloud to my husband. We both marveled at this. God truly does answer prayer. Hallelujah!

    I enjoy reading your blogs so much; you’re my favorite blogger! What’s more, your English is correct, which is an added blessing. There are no distractions from misspelled words, incorrect punctuation marks, or faulty grammar. Your message is focused and communicated well. It is evident you work hard to craft your writing, and you express yourself with Holy Ghost conviction and truth. Praise God for your gift used for His glory!

    This story means more also because I was privileged to sit under your parent’s ministry for about a week at ABI. What a blessing! Your mother was just full of love and sweetness. Thank you again.

    Sandy Runkle

    December 3, 2013 at 11:19 pm

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