Our HistoryChurch History is the record of God's gracious, wonderful and mighty deeds, showing how by his Spirit and Word he rules his Church and conquers the world. -N.F.
With many new Polish emigrants
moving into Westfield, there was no Protestant church for them to worship in. In early 1951, a home church was established on White Street with ten people in attendance, including Pastor B. Tembrowski.
With the help of Reverend John Nykiel of Boston,
arrangements were made with the local Methodist church to use their building free of charge until the Polish Full Gospel Church could acquire their own property. During this time, the church also became incorporated with the state government as an independent congregation.
A large home and land were purchased
at 30 Montgomery Street in Westfield. Services were held in the large parlor room of the house. A foundation was laid and work began on the addition to the building, which would later become the sanctuary. The members of the church built the addition, while the Episcopal Church of Westfield donated completed pews and a pulpit. Folding chairs were given by the Central Baptist Church.
The Polish Full Gospel Church
was a very welcoming addition to the community with a ministry serving a large Polish-speaking population. Westfield consisted of 60% Polish-speaking residents at the time. Also, that building became the first Pentecostal church of its kind outside of Springfield in the Pioneer Valley.
As the church grew, people from the area
and from other towns attended services. Sunday School was started for the children. A youth choir was formed. Not only did they minister in their own church, but the choir traveled to other communities as far as New York and New Jersey to sing and spread the gospel. From that point forward, missions became an important focus of the church.
Later, the Assemblies of God requested to use the building
in order to begin an English-speaking Pentecostal church. Reverend Gustafsov was their pastor. When that church grew, they moved to the Westfield Grange for their services and later acquired their own building.
Fellowship was established
with other Polish-speaking churches in the United States. The church hosted conventions and conferences. Also, the delegates traveled to attend Christian gatherings in other states. In addition, the youth group organized monthly youth rallies.
Upon Pastor Tembrowski’s retirement,
Paul Nosalyuk became pastor. Following Pastor Nosalyuk, Reverend C. Romanyuk arrived from Australia to first be the assistant pastor, and later become the pastor of the church. When Reverend Romanyuk left to pastor another church, Paul Nosalyuk became the pastor again. Upon Reverend Nosalyuk’s retirement, Pastor Wally Czerniejewski became the pastor and serves to this day.
Under Pastor Czerniejewski,
the decision was made to sponsor and help several Ukrainian refugee families. And so, a new chapter began for the church. With more and more families being sponsored to come to the United States seeking refuge, additional space was needed to accommodate the growing congregation. A new, large addition was added onto the back of the existing building and more parking space was cleared. Once again, the church members did the construction work themselves. The church continued to grow and eventually, an additional Sunday morning service was added to once again house the growing congregation.
Property on Union Street was purchased
to build a new church. The old buildings on the property were torn down and a new church plan was drafted. The new building housed a worship auditorium, classrooms, and a fellowship hall with a kitchen. Members, yet again, did most of the work on the building. The old church property at 30 Montgomery Street was sold to another group of Christians and continues to be a house of worship today.
The new church was dedicated
on the 18th and 19th of May in 2002 with Pastor Wally Czerniejewski as Senior Pastor. Also in attendance of the dedication were the last living original charter members – Antoni and Katherine Pluciennik.
The Full Gospel Church has been ministering
the Gospel message in Slavic languages in the City of Westfield for over 50 years. Because of its teachings and guidance, many pastors and missionaries have heeded the call to minister not only locally, but in many other geographical areas of our country and overseas. We earnestly pray that the Full Gospel Church will continue to be a vital part of the spiritual heritage in our city and will never cease to proclaim the Good News to all people.