OUR TESTIMONY

 
The Rehoboth House of Praise Church of God was established on March 6, 2004, two months after Bishop Junior A. Rhodes and his family migrated to the United States from Jamaica, West Indies. Bishop Rhodes, his four children, Margaree Hall and Jeantel Carter made up the church’s overall starting membership of 7. They were supported by his parents along with his aunts and uncles who were members of other congregations but occasionally attended services as they were initially only held on Sunday evenings. The church shared rental space with another church located on Farmers Boulevard and 114th Avenue in Queens, New York.
 
A turning point came when we were finally able to begin worshipping on Sunday mornings about two months from when we began, on Mother’s Day. By that time, we had relocated to another rental space on Farmers Boulevard and 110th Avenue. It was there that we held our first baptismal service. Six new converts were baptized during this service. It was also during this same time period that one of our members, Sis. Victoria Barnes, experienced the amazing healing power of God in a Sunday morning worship service.
 
From that moment on, it was quite evident that God was with us. By February 13th, 2005, we moved from mission status and became organized into a local church with 32 members and 17 non-members at our new location of 199-18 Linden Boulevard. This time, our change in location was forced upon us due to mold and poor maintenance but it was this very same move that stimulated our growth and development as a church. At the time, Bishop A.G. Quarrie was our district overseer. He received and treated us with love and respect and assisted us financially. Because of this, the church grew and became stronger in every way. People were being saved, baptized by water and The Holy Spirit and we were consistently adding new members.
 
We soon outgrew the facility and sought for more space. In September of 2007, we found a larger facility and relocated in November of 2007 to 142-11 on Farmers Boulevard, which was dedicated by Bishop Andrew Binda who, at the time, was our State Overseer. Once again, at this new location, it became clear that God was truly with us. At our previous location of 199-18 Linden Boulevard, we could hardly afford our monthly rent. However, our monthly rent as well as other expenses at 142-11 Farmers Boulevard were much more than what we had to pay before. Yet, by the grace of God, we were able to pay it each month. We continued to see evidence of His favor upon us as we were appointed a new District Overseer, Bishop Hixford Allen, who stood by us with strong support from our inception until now. The church also continued to experience tremendous numerical and spiritual growth as well as seeing two of our own; Bro. Paul Rhodes and Bro. Dave Smith become credentialed ministers.

  Yet again, we grew out of our facility at 142-11 Farmers Boulevard and sought to find another location that would not only provide us with more space but where we would no longer have to rent. We had come to the realization that our monthly rent was equivalent to monthly mortgage payments. So, this time, we sought to find a location we could purchase and own. As a result, we launched the Building Fund Project in February of 2014. Each member made a pledge to contribute a substantial amount over the course of the next two years. On the second Sunday of September of 2014, Bishop Rhodes announced to the congregation that God had spoken to his heart and told him to rise up and do something great as he is getting old, in a similar manner as God had spoken to Joshua. God encouraged him to use the principles of faith and works. With the help of a real estate broker within our congregation, Rev. Dave Smith, Bishop Rhodes was able to find a new facility for our church but we needed to give a down payment. This was disheartening as we did not know where we would get all that money from. We initially wanted to apply the option of rent to own but Rev. Dave Smith advised us that that option would not be in our best interest and that we should consider purchasing instead. We agreed but as a result the initial down payment was increased. However, with tremendous support from our congregation, our presiding Bishop (Andrew Binda), other local congregations and pastors, on January 15, 2015, we closed on the property at 199-24 Linden Blvd., just one door away from where we were from 2005-2007. We began renovation on January 16, 2015 and approximately 2 months later, on Sunday, March 1, 2015, we held our 1st official worship services in our new church home. On Sunday, May 3, 2015, we held our dedicatory service for our new facility. It was attended by our State Overseer, Bishop Andrew Binda; our District Overseer, Bishop Hixford Allen; Bishop A.G. Quarrie, the other congregations on our district along with their pastors and many other honored guests and visitors. There were over 350 people in attendance. We were filled to capacity, so much so that many people unfortunately had to be turned away at the door. We have since seen a great increase in our membership, finances, and conversion of souls. Even the very atmosphere of the church has changed. Some of our members have been so inspired by the faith they have witnessed in their shepherd and church leadership that they, themselves, have gone on to purchase properties of their own. Overall, our church has truly been blessed with increase, especially in attendance, and we give God the glory for continuously being with us through it all.