METTER, GA (WTOC) - Rev. Larry Guido can see his late brother's legacy all across the world famous Guido Gardens. But it certainly shows this time of year when the garden comes alive after dark with Christmas lights.
"If it had been up to Michael, there wouldn't be a blade of grass visible. Every blade would be covered with a light, every tree would be surrounded by a lamp," Larry Guido said with a laugh.
Dr. Michael Guido, known world wide as "The Sower", began the light displays in his garden nearly 20 years ago. This is the first Christmas since Rev. Michael Guido's death in January and people have flocked to the two-acre gardens in record numbers for the Nights of Lights observance.
"They come in the chapel and say 'We miss Michael sitting in the corner. We miss the opportunity for him to pray with us,' that is very touching," the younger brother noted.
Larry Guido and the rest of the ministry staff are determined to carry on the traditions, not just the lights but the ministry work itself. He thinks people are coming and looking beyond the lights for inspiration and guidance in tough times.
"It seems like people are looking for a sense of hope, a sense of desiring someplace they're wanted and loved and they seem to have found it here," he explained.
The Nights of Lights features many familiar attractions, such as a life-sized mechanized nativity, light displays shaped like angels as well as snowmen. Larry knows his brother is looking down from above and he hopes " The Sower" approves.
"Somebody said he probably has the brightest lit mansion in heaven, his tradition will carry on here and up there," Guido said with a smile.
That hope stretches from the Christmas lights to the rest of the year as well. The lights are open for viewing every evening until 9pm through Christmas Day.