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Alumnus produces comedy shows in N. Hollywood

When alumnus Charles Gooch graduated from this campus in 1986, he believed his mission was in ministry. Twenty years later, he produces his own comedy show.

In 1982, Gooch began his freshman year at the Bullard campus, which currently is Federico?s Beauty College. Throughout the next four years, he developed close relationships with both the faculty and student body.

“Gooch was FC’s teddy bear,” Eunie McEntee, girls PE teacher, said. “Everyone loved him, he was a leader, vibrant, responsible, a spark. Talk about a spirit leader, it was him. He always got everyone pumped up and involved. He was like a cheerleader.”

The first five years after he graduated, Gooch spoke as a guest at chapel. He attended Fresno City College and worked as the youth pastor and the Senior Associate Pastor at Victory Christian Fellowship. After extensive prayer, Gooch felt directed to pursue entertainment.

?I honestly felt that it was God?s plan for my life,? Gooch said. ?Entertainment has been a big part of my life; it?s always been something I wanted to pursue. I wanted to get out there and be a light to the world.?

Gooch feels the career change gave him access to encourage a broader community.

?The thing I do to encourage anybody is simple: read and practice Micah 6:8,? Gooch said. ?As much as I love this entertainment business and the strong probability that it can lead to what the world calls, ?the good life?, my life has no meaning if I forget God, and it has very little meaning if I can?t affect/infect someone?s life in a positive way. That doesn?t mean I have to ?preach? to them or quote scripture, but it does mean I have to allow God?s love and mercy to work through me.?

Gooch worked as an intern for a concert promotion company the summer after he graduated from high school. He toured with Janet Jackson for five years, which introduced him into the world of entertainment.

After nine years, Gooch landed his first production. He believes the media often tempts him with his faith, but remains confident in the forgiveness and mercy of the Lord.

?There have been times that I didn?t just ?stumble?, but I fell on my face, my butt, anywhere that could cause pain, and embarrassment,? Gooch said. ?There have been times I saddened God with my actions, but he is a God of mercy and grace.

“One part of Christianity that people fail to realize is that we are imperfect human beings that still have a flesh suit and even on our best days, it still doesn?t compare to the awesomeness of God. When we do mess up, Jesus will clean us up and sometimes even clean up our mess.?

Gooch relates the everyday struggles of a secular work environment with that of a high school campus. Although he changed paths from influencing students directly as a youth pastor, he hopes to raise curiosity within minds young and old through his lifestyle.

?I was a youth pastor for years, and I have spoken to youth groups around the nation,? Gooch said. ?Most of all, I was real with them, and showed them the love of Christ and how He has been so crucial in my life. I have to remember that my job is not to judge anyone else, but to hopefully live my life in a way that people would be interested in meeting the greatest person ever to walk to planet, and the reason I can live. His name is Jesus.?

Gooch currently resides in North Hollywood, where he produces a comedy show, Trippin? on Tuesday, which airs every Tuesday night at the Comedy Store. Stars of the show include Chris Rock, Dave Chapelle, Katt Williams, and the entire Wild ?N Out crew. He can also be seen on HBO?s Def Comedy Jam, along with many of his fellow comedians.

?I never expected someone that went to a small Christian High School to take on a task as big as Hollywood,? Kara Linkowski, ?08, said. ?It is one of the places where God is needed the most because it affects our daily life through what we watch and hear.?

Gooch bases his life on the goal to have a lasting effect on those he works with, along with his audience.

?My entire life is built,? Gooch said, ?on helping people experience three things: peace, love and laughter.?

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