History

1926     Rev. Stephen Jefferies held a Revival Campaign in East Ham, he was a Pentecostal Evangelist and many were saved and filled with the Holy Spirit during his ministry. Arising from these meetings some of those filled with the Spirit were asked to leave their places of worship and they congregated in Plaistow, in the front room of Mrs. Crick’s house.

1927     Under the care of Mr. E.H. Davies the numbers attending outgrew the capacity of the front room and it was decided to look for a more suitable premises. In a miraculous way, two shops became available in Plashet Road, Upton Manor. Under the direction of K.R. Dorling, these were converted into a large meeting hall that was renamed “The Gospel Mission”. It was at this time the Gospel Mission was affiliated to the “Assemblies of God”.

1928     Mr. C.L. Parker was invited to be the Pastor of the fast growing group of people. He resigned in 1929.

1930     Mr. R. Boughton, who was brought up in the Salvation Army, was invited to take over the Pastorate, and he proved to be an able leader. Once again the premises became too small for the congregation and prayer was made for a larger building.

1932     After the Methodist Union the circuits in the area were reorganized and some of the churches were closed; among these was the Elizabeth Fry Memorial in Plashet Grove.

1934     Mr. R. Boughton began negotiating with the owners to purchase the now redundant building.

1935     The purchase was completed and the renovations were carried out, again under the supervision of K.R. Dorling, enabling the formal dedication and opening celebrations to take place on 6th April in that year.

1936     Pastor R. Boughton was leading a Young peoples’ holiday rally in Louth when, on the 4th August, whilst swimming with some of the young folk, he was drowned while attempting to save one of them who was in trouble. At East Ham a Memorial Service was held on 7th August. The Elders at this time were Mr. K.R. Dorling and Mr. G.E.H. Crick and it was decided that Mr. Dorling would be appointed as the Pastor.

1939     The 3rd September was the beginning of World War 2 and in the early months it was known as the “phoney war”.

1940     Between September 1940 and March 1941 the London Blitz saw ever increasing numbers of bombing raids on the East End of London. East Ham, being on the route taken to the Docks by the bombers, did not escape the aerial attacks.

1941     It was during one such raid in March that a Parachute Bomb (Landmine) fell in Whittaker Road and destroyed many of the houses. It is now the site of St Stephen’s School. The Full Gospel Hall was badly damages and the Main Hall became unsafe to use. The meetings continued in the lower hall throughout the remainder of the war years.

1945     With the ending of the war the work was begun to repair the damage to the main church, the windows on the East elevation had to replaced, the roof tiles were replaced and the interior walls were painted. Meanwhile the folk gathered in the lower hall.

1947     Mr Dorling decided it was time for him to retire and after much prayer Mr. Clyde Young, a minister from Sunderland was invited to take over the Pastorate; he was used by the Lord in the ministry of praying for folk to receive the infilling of the Holy Spirit.

1951     The war damage repairs were finally completed and a reopening celebration took place over the Easter holiday weekend. This anniversary continued each year as the Easter Convention. Clyde’s brother Norman was invited by the Walthamstow Assembly to be their Pastor and they, together with the Pastors of Canning Town and Hackney Assemblies, started a monthly meeting that became “The Four Corner Convention.”

1963     Pastor Clyde Young resigned and moved back to the North of England and the Church Secretary,  Mr. A. Winch took over the Pastorate pending the choice of a new man.

1968     Mr. A. Morgan was invited to speak at the Easter Convention and was approached by the Oversight as to his availability to move to East Ham. He agreed and was inducted as Pastor. He was a good musician and formed a choir from the young men and women. He also re-organized the Sunday school as an All-age Sunday school. It was a surprise when it became known that he had been “head-hunted” by an Australian Bible College. He and his family moved to Australia in 1970.

1970     Mr A. Winch was asked to resume as Pastor until a replacement could be found.

1971     After hearing Mr. J. Ivinson, an Apostolic Minister, the Oversight commended him to the Members who voted that he be inducted as the Pastor. The church again grew in numbers and Home Groups were established. A day nursery was set up and was held in the lower hall. It was during this period that a new insidious teaching began to spread though the Assemblies of God, that of “Shepherding”, and it brought division and confusion especially to the older members. Whilst the Assembly grew numerically there were those who questioned the way in which Pastoral care was given through home-group leaders.

1985     Arising from a disagreement with the Trustees over the future of the Full Gospel Hall, Mr. Ivinson resigned the Pastorate and together with the oversight and many of the younger members, left the church. The Trustees agreed to take over the governing of the church and with the co-operation of those members who remained, set about consolidating the church.

1988     Under the leadership of the Trustees the membership grew and Mr. C. Lamb was recommended as being a suitable candidate to Pastor the church. After prayer and discussion with the Members Mr. Lamb was inducted to the Pastorate. He proved to be a good shepherd and the work grew under his care. Sadly, he was taken ill with Lung Cancer, which proved to be fatal. Shortly before his death in 1991 he nominated Mr E. Dewhirst to succeed him.

1991     Mr. E. Dewhirst was a part-time pastor, who was a School teacher; he was appointed to the Pastorate and brought his experience in the Educational Sector. He introduced many modern aids to the ministry. The Youth group grew in numbers and in 1993 a Youth Pastor was appointed.
Mr. Dewhirst continued until, in 2003 he tendered his resignation.

1993     Mr. S. Wright, a graduate from the Bible College of Wales, was invited to be the Youth Pastor. He had an excellent ministry, both with the young people and the congregation in general.  However, following his marriage, he was invited to Pastor a Baptist church in Wales. He left us in 1995.

2003     Prior to Mr. Dewhirst’s leaving he, together with the Oversight, having recognized the ministry gift in Mr. C. Sam-Franks, encouraged him to accept the Pastorate which, after due consideration he did and was duly inducted in December 2003. He was, above all a man of prayer, and the church grew under his leadership. He introduced the role of Deacons into the church’s ministry and established the various support groups for visitation and pastoral care.

2014     During the year the Ministry team was strengthened by the appointment as Associate Pastor of Reverend Patricia John, and the appointment of Mr. E. Boateng as Youth Pastor.

2016     It was during 2016 that Mr. C. Franks announced that he intended to retire and move back to Ghana at the end of the year. His final meeting was on New Year’s Eve.

2017     Interregnum – The Church Council undertook the oversight of the work and the church agreed that Dr Benson act as caretaker leader pending the appointment of a full-time Pastor.