In 1968, Charles and Janet Abernathy brought their three young sons Gary, Mark and Brian from Ohio to Titusville to start an Apostolic Pentecostal church in the East Central Florida region. Obeying the call of The Lord and trusting Him to provide, the Abernathy’s worked tirelessly and sacrificially to establish a Spirit-filled church in the name of Jesus. A small congregation gathered in storefronts and brush harbors in the early days, but after a fundraising trip back to Ohio, the Abernathy’s returned to Titusville and purchased a duplex apartment at 95 Brown Avenue. This would eventually expand into the campus we enjoy today. In 1974, the Abernathy’s again responded to God’s call as missionaries to Africa with a lifetime of exemplary service in South Africa and Malawi. Their three sons all became fervent preachers of the Gospel ministering at home and around the world.
As the Abernathy’s departed, a successful preaching and singing evangelist named Hal Kennedy assumed the helm in Titusville. Only the strongest calling and burden could have compelled Hal and Voncile Kennedy to leave Pensacola, FL and cancel years of future evangelistic bookings across North America. Their adult children Patti and Gary remained in Pensacola, but their youngest son Harold made the trip to Titusville and would prove to be invaluable to the work. With a passionate focus on Apostolic music, worship, doctrine and fundraising the congregation steadily grew. Wise stewards of human and financial resources, the Kennedy’s worked along side the people to purchase property and construct facilities that would accommodate future revival and growth. In fact, the sanctuary we now fill was built and paid for under their leadership with a congregation less than half the current size. After 33 years of faithful, productive service, the Kennedy’s retired as Pastor Emeritus and returned to Pensacola, FL.
Following these honorable pioneers is the current Senior Pastor Jody Wells, his wife Christie and sons Jace and Judah. With a focus on souls, Apostolic structure and strategy, Jody Wells leads The Pentecostals toward a regional vision of evangelism, discipleship and empowerment. Leaving a 16-year career with NASA to answer God’s call, Pastor Wells sees the solid foundation laid and expanded by the Abernathy’s and Kennedy’s as a launch pad to expanded spiritual dominion, bolder missions and regional preaching points. So far, the congregation has nearly tripled with 43% of the congregation trained, equipped, empowered and placed in ministry roles on and off campus. We can’t wait to see what The Lord does next!