Our Story

Our Story

How it all started...

Prayer House Church of God by Faith History
Near the end of 1965 while praying to God, Sis. Leola Coley , then a member of Adams St. C.O.G.B.F., asked for a prayer partner.  During the same time,  then Sis. Jenny Robinson was also praying for a prayer partner.  Sis. Coley called then Sis. Robinson and they agreed to be prayer partners.
Every Wednesday evening for one year after work, Sis. Coley would go to Sis. Robinson’s on Ford St. and they would go into a room already set aside for prayer and prayed.  They were soon joined by Sis.  Rosa Mosby.  In the second year, the Lord spoke again and told them to begin going into homes.  While planning to go to visit Mother Butler’s second husband on Exchange St., Elder Eugene Kemp felt that they needed a man to be with them.  He assigned Deacon Hunter Chiles to go with them.  Sis. Robinson began to work at Rochester Products and was not able to go as desired.  Sis. Coley was in constant communication with her pastor, Elder Eugene Kemp.
Soon there were many going weekly from house to house praying.  A fast was called and many fell away.
One Saturday, when Sis. Coley and Dea. Chiles were on their way from visiting Sis. Dorothy Barfield, the Lord spoke to Sis. Coley again and said for them to get a place (building) to have prayer.
After receiving confirmation and instructions from Eld. Kemp, the prayer band began meeting at Sis. Ruth Wormley’s house, 588 North St., from January - March.  They gave half of their lay-by-and-store offerings to their home church and the other half was put into an account.  At the end of March, with the account at $1,000, a place was found at 324 Hudson Avenue.  Services were held every Wednesday and Friday and they still attended Adams Street on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Dea. Chiles and Sis. Coley taught bible lesson.  A 72 hour fast was called and the Lord blessed mightily.  People came in off the streets and got saved.  Mrs. Dorothy Letts was just driving by and stopped in and was saved.  In October of that year, at the October meeting, youth pastor of Adams Street, Elder Dorsett L. Smith was sent to oversee the mission.
Within a few months, or by January 1971, the church had flourished to a full operating body of approximately 25 adults and a host of children.  Choirs were formed, committees came into being, deacons and financial boards bonded together; Brother David C. Rourk soon started teaching and preaching.  Everything the church body needed God supplied in a storefront.
The people grew weary because many were being added to the Church and our facilities were just too small and inadequate.  Elder Smith said, “We are not going to move until God directs us; therefore, we will just have to burst at the seams.”  And, indeed, it did happen.  By December 1972 we could go no further.  We began to pray for a church and then someone spotted a church on Atlantic Avenue.  We went over to negotiate.  The owners didn’t want to talk to “sanctified people”, even though the church had been vacant for a couple of years.  During its vacancy, they turned it into a recreation center.  We were not discouraged; we went back to our storefront and prayed some more.  God sent us back to the owners in March 1973 and, this time, they not only were willing to sell, but we named our price!  Normally, the seller has a price; but they asked us, “What are you willing to pay?”
Two months later, in May 1973, we consecrated the church at 142 Atlantic Avenue.  God really started blessing.  Men were added, women were added, children came from all over to Sunday School.  Families were being formed as our younger couples began to have children.  Unsaved husbands came to the Lord.  The church grew sound as God strengthened it spiritually and financially.  On June 5, 1979, God called home to rest our first Pastor, Elder D. L. Smith.  As best could be determined, he was the first person to depart from this original church.  We will always hold him very dear to our hearts “In Memorial”.  Under this mighty man of God the church witnessed many miraculous healings and interventions by God.
Mother Bertha Smith was miraculously healed of cancer when Elder Smith and Deacon Chiles agreed that the surgeon would not be able to find it; and it is so to this day as of 2007.
Sister Teddy Henderson ruptured a number of discs in her back as a result of a fall at work.  God healed her right before our eyes at the beginning of one of our Sunday services as Elder Smith laid hands on her and prayed.
Many young wives were told that they could not have children, but they did after receiving prayer.
The medical community had given up on Sis. Jewel Collins, and set her in a room to die.  God saved her and healed her body from an incurable malady, and she lives.
Mother Bertha Smith was pinned at the knees between two cars when her young son started one of the cars while Mother Smith was passing between them in the spring of 1979.  The bone in her leg was protruding from her skin and hands were immediately laid on it and the bone moved back into place.  The doctors said that because of the nature of the bone fracture, she would never walk again.  Elder Smith said that God would heal her and she has been up walking and dancing until this day in 2007.
Elder David C. Rourk and Elder Theodore Brown followed during the period June 1979 through December 1980.  In January 1981, Elder Paul Parnell, was installed as pastor.  He assisted in bringing the church’s membership to a level of 114 adults and 163 children in December 1988, until his transfer to Syracuse, New York.  Elder David C. Rourk returned as Pastor in December 1988.
In January 1990, Elder George Dailey was installed as pastor and currently leads the congregation.  Under Elder Dailey’s leadership the Prayer House congregation has grown to about 200 adults (2004) and the church has continued to move forward.  In 1991, it was deemed necessary that we should start a building fund in order to renovate and enlarge our church building at 142 Atlantic Avenue.  In 1992, Deacon Willie Miller spearheaded a successful campaign where each auxiliary in the church would be randomly selected to raise money for one month, starting with a goal of $1,000 in January and increasing by increments of $1,000 for each of the following months.  This beginning blessed us to raise sufficient funds, and modify our plans to the extent that we were able to close on our new address at 270 Cumberland Street in August 2006.   In 2006 Elder Willie Lightfoot was led by God to attend and to serve under Elder Dailey.  On 2020 Elder Dailey retired as Pastor and Supreme Council Appointed Elder Willie Joe Lightfoot Sr. as Pastor of Prayer House. 
In Memoriam:
Elder D. L. Smith                 Dea. Cleveland Beaty                  Dea. Hunter Chiles  
Mother Laura Butler            Bro. Leroy Barfield                      Dea. Willie J. Miller
Dea. Taylor                            Mother Sally McClain                  Sis. Evelyn Seabrooks
Mother Minnie Dorsey         Sis. Annie M. Charles          Sis. Kathy Binion
Bro. Vaughn Smith               Sis. Elizabeth Fowler            Bro. Fred Letts
Bro. David Jones                   Sis. Lillie Pearl Beaty  Bro. Paul Brian Parnell
Bro. Willie Lonon                 Sis. Patsy Dorothy Hobbs Mother Edna Pert
Mother Rosa Mosby             Minister Carl Blake              Sis. Louise Glover
Sis. Sudie Tucker                  Elder Paul Henderson     Sis. Corliss
Mother Bertha Smith           Sis. Brenda Muller                       Dea. Lorenzo Jones

Expanding the vision...

1. Salvation   
2. Servitude
       4. Love                  

Where we are headed...

We are preparing  church to service the World .  

Be a part of our story...

Join  Prayer House  Church  of  God  by  Faith  every   Sunday  on  FB   at  10::30 am as  we  gather  to  worship !