From humble beginnings God has brought us this far. The late honourable Bishop Benjamin Pitt, through the inspiration of our Lord took an enormous leap of faith and we purchased the Faith Chapel building, formerly known as Hanover Chapel. We moved from St. Paul's, Rectory Grove, Clapham, which was rented accommodation, to the present church building in 1978. The first church service in our new building was held on 5 November 1978. The building was in a grossly dilapidated condition, which took nearly a year to renovate. It was completed just in time for the church dedication the following year.
Faith Chapel was dedicated to the glory of God on 26 September 1979 by one of the former Presiding Bishops of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, Inc. (P.A.W.), Bishop Francis Smith. Over 30 international delegates were present from Jamaica, the USA and Canada. The High Commissioner of Jamaica and the Mayor of the London Borough of Southwark were also in attendance at the historical dedication service. General attendance was high and the building was unable to contain the total number of people who came.
The summer of 1981 saw a surge in membership, following a revival crusade in which a delegation from the USA ministered; Bishop Thomas Weeks and Bishop Noel Jones being the main speakers. Thirty three souls were baptised in the name of Jesus and many were filled with the Holy Spirit. It was a powerful and awesome time, with lives being changed forever. Faith Chapel moved from strength to strength with the church steadily growing in members.
The late Bishop Benjamin Pitt had a vision of growth and expansion and with this in mind he commissioned work on the erection of a balcony. Sadly, just after the balcony was completed a fire destroyed a major area of the church building on 18 November 1993. We were unable to worship in the building for over eight months as a section of the building had to be demolished and rebuilt. The building was renovated and the large hall that was destroyed was rebuilt. A loft extension provided additional rooms above the hall which now houses three of our offices, a lounge, the prayer tower, a kitchenette, a bathroom, a shower room and two additional rooms. Services recommenced in the sanctuary in July 1994.
The rededication of the building was booked for 14 January 1995. However, during the time of preparation for this event our dear Bishop Benjamin Pitt went home to be with the Lord on 11 January 1995, just three days before the church's rededication. Bishop Frank A Cuomo rededicated Faith Chapel to the glory of God as planned, despite the enormous loss that we had just experienced. Bishop Benjamin Pitt was greatly missed by all.
In January 1996, with the ratifying of their new constitution, the P.A.W. churches in the United Kingdom, now known as the District of the United Kingdom and Ireland, were officially incorporated into the European Council of Nations (ECN), which is the 31st Episcopal District of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, Inc. Being a part of the ECN has involved travel to various nations in Europe and the hosting of some of the Council Sessions in the United Kingdom. This exchange has served to enhance the skills and knowledge of both the leadership and the members in Faith Chapel and has allowed the church to continue sharing fellowship with the brethren in Germany, Italy and more recently France, Russia and Belgium.
Over the years the assembly has seen continuous growth in numbers, with souls being added to the church and new converts receiving the Holy Ghost on a regular basis. This has been reflected in the fact that since 1996 to date over 200 souls have surrendered their lives to the Lord and been baptised in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and to Him we give the praise.
One of the aims of Pastor Thomas throughout the years has been to see the saints spiritually develop through the Word of God. He feels strongly that we have been living in a day and time when many doctrines are being preached that do not have their foundations in God's Word. He has been so passionate about this area that in May 2001 he launched the 'Word Conference'; a three day event held over the first bank holiday weekend in May, which focuses on living by the Word. This has now become Faith Chapel's main annual event. To further inspire the saints to develop, each major department has hosted its own annual conference for the past two years, where they have been able to determine the format, structure and speakers for these events. All of these conferences have proven to be a blessing and have had a positive impact on those who have attended.
While the years have passed and the times have changed, Faith Chapel has still maintained the purpose of exalting Jesus. When Jesus is exalted anything can happen.
To find out more about Faith Chapel Ministries, send us your inquiry and we'll respond shortly.