Our History

    A little group of believers with various church backgrounds, possessing a deep spiritual hunger, heard how people were receiving an experience with God similar to that received on the day of Pentecost by the early Church.  This small group sought for and received their "Pentecostal" experience.  So overjoyed were they that they began to tell everyone they met about it.  Some heard them gladly and sought for their own "Pentecost" while others rejected.  Fellowship in some of the Churches they were attending became very difficult resulting in the natural drawing together of these people.  Services were conducted in Salem and several from Pennsville attended.

    On December 30, 1937, some 16 of these people along with their families living in the Pennsville area gathered together in the home of Hubert Smith on Dunns Lane to discuss the establishment of a Pentecostal Church in their own community.  Among these were:  Hubert and Irene Smith, Earl and Ethel Hann, Lidie Banger, Herald and Ethel Stuart, Miriam Craig, Eugene and Florence Calkins, Dan and Anna Gifford and daughter, Sally Crispin, Viola O'Brien, Rose and Emma Moody, and Edith Kohl.  Prayer meetings were begun and continued to be held in this home until a sanctuary could be erected.

    On June 13, 1938, this little group of believers with a determined faith in God selected a plot of ground, 100'x217', located at 76 Dolbow Avenue and purchased it from Earl Hann, one of the Trustees.

    Ground was broken immediately and construction was on its way.

    An edifice 30'x50' was built by donated labor of the local brethren and friends.  It was completed and dedicated to the service of the Lord on December 26, 1938.

    Maranatha Pentecostal Tabernacle of Pennsville was adopted as the name of the Church and the Church was officially set in order on October 31, 1942 by the Eastern District Council, of which the New Jersey District Council was later formed from.  It wasn't until 1948 that the name was changed to Pennsville Assembly of God Church.

    Five Pastors have served the church as its ministers (as of the time of this historical record) with almost steady growth under each.

    The Rev. John Tubbs of Newak, DE was called to be the first pastor.  Under his ministry, a new addition of Sunday School rooms and a Young People's room was added.

    The Rev. Frank D. Christie next served as pastor.  The parsonage at 83 Locust Avenue, as well as a Sunday School bus was purchased during his term as pastor.

    In 1950, under the leadership of the Rev. Samuel Weidler, the need for further enlargement became apparent.  Again the men of the Church rallied to the challenge and donated their labor to construct the building as it presently stands.  Six new Sunday School rooms were added and the auditorium was enlarged with over-all dimensions of 56'x74'.

    The Rev. Ira Moore served next as pastor for a short time and was succeeded by Rev. Elmer W. Lindale in 1957.  Under his ministry, an organ was purchased, a new heating system for the church installed, the basement beautified with six Sunday School rooms added, as well as an assembly hall, and some $2500 was spent for office equipment.  These facilities were being quickly outgrown so the next step was the purchase of a tract of land just under four acres from Atlantic City Electric Company for relocation of the Church on North Broadway, the main thoroughfare of the community.

    Men of the Church with the help of a bulldozer cleared the property while plans were being drawn up for the new plant.

    It was during this time, on January 29, 1963 that the Church officially became affiliated with The General Council of the Assemblies of God.

    In the fall of 1964 a ground breaking service was held at 328 North Broadway in Pennsville and the new Church Edifice was on its way up.  LaRosa Bros. Inc. of Vineland erected the shell of the building.  The men along with other friends of the Church helped and as a result several thousand dollars in construction costs were saved.  Pastor Lindale acted as General Contractor, obtaining bids on various aspects of the construction as well as on all materials.  The women of the Church helped with the painting and varnishing.

    In the spring of 1965 Pennsville Assembly formed a caravan from the old location at 76 Dolbow Avenue to the new location.  Thus the move was made although the building still needed some further work to be completed.  Since the move the bapistry has been built in, two five-ton air conditioners have been installed, the hallway has been carpeted along with the nursery and the kitchen.  The driveway and parking lots have been black-topped, the low areas to the side and rear of the property have been filled in and leveled.  The cabinets have been finished in the kitchen and the air conditioner in the nursery has been built around to beautify and sound-proof it.  There are still some jobs that need to be completed (as of the writing of this historical record) but the great bulk of the work has been completed.

    From that first humble prayer meeting in 1938 with a 12 charter members, Pennsville Assembly of God Church has grown until it now members more than 400 adherents.  Its weekly bulletin is sent to more than 670 families.  Each Easter and Christmas for the past several years have seen larger crowds in attendance than the previous year.  The Church now has a full time Assistant Pastor as well as a full time Secretary.  The Sunday School and Church services are growing and the end is not yet in sight.  For the last two years Pennsville Assembly has been the home of Ambassador Christian Academy.  The Old Church building on Dolbow Avenue is still owned by Pennsville Assembly and has been opened for Pennsville Christian Day School.

    We of the Pennsville Assembly of God Church give God the glory for anything that has been done for we know that "Except God builds the house, they labor in vain that would build it."  It is our prayer that humble men and women may find through these endeavors the wonderful Christ whom we love and serve.

    Edited by: Christopher M. Tilton
    Primary Source:  Unknown Writer
    Additional Sources:  Stories of Lower Penns Neck - Mary F. Sanderlin; Church History (AG General Council); Affiliation Documents (1963)

    Please note that the information above is for historical purposes only, reflects Church history up to the date it was written and may not be modernly up to date.  I am in the process of updating the Church history, which is no easy task.  So stay tuned!!!

    List of Church Pastors

    Rev. John P. Tubbs

    Lived (????-????)
    Pastorate (1938-????)
    Rev. Frank Dean Christie (Anna)
    Lived (February 18, 1911 - September 25, 1972)
    Pastorate (????-????)
    Rev. Samuel Young Weidler (Anna)
    Lived (February 11, 1914 - September ??, 1974)
    Pastorate (c1950-????)
    Rev. Ira Moore
    Lived (????-????)
    Pastorate (????-????)
    Rev. Elmer W. Lindale, Jr. (Anna)
    Lived (January 2, 1925 - December 12, 2004)
    Pastorate (1957-1983)
    Rev. John F. Harman
    Lived (????-????)
    Pastorate (1983-1986)
    Rev. Louis Lisi, Jr.
    Lived (???? - ????)
    Pastorate (1986-1988)

    Rev. Fred M. Jensen

    Lived (???? - Living)
    Pastorate (1988-1999)

    Rev. Marshall L. Dodd (Zelma)

    Lived (August 21, 1942 - Living)
    Pastorate (2000-2006)
    Rev. Peter E. Manning, Jr. (Adisa)
    Lived (June 10, 1979 - Living)
    Pastorate (2008-Present)