Our History

It all started in 1916...

In 1916 Evangelist Jonah Shelton came to Wickenburg and near the banks of the Hassayampa River, on what is now Valentine Street, opened the First Pentecostal Tabernacle church in a store front building.  Valentine Street, at that time, was the main street into Wickenburg.  But sometime in the late teens or early 20's, the Hassayampa flooded and took out the whole street.  Main Street moved up the hill to what is now Wickenburg Way.  The church then purchased three town lots at 188 S Tegner and pitched a tent.  The church began to build the first phase of a just a meeting hall, then a caretaker's one-room house next door, and then a parsonage was built next to the church.In 1926 the First Pentecostal Tabernacle chose to become affiliated with the Assemblies of God as a Cooperative Fellowship, but insisted on being an independent assembly.  Through the years, there have been 22 different Pastors, with the longest tenure being the founding pastor, Rev. Jonah Shelton, until our current pastor, Rev. Duane Middleton.In June of 1990, Pastor Duane was traveling to southern Arizona taking a Youth Evangelist to a camp south of Sierra Vista.  While on the road, the speaker fell asleep and Pastor Duane had some words begin to speak to his heart, "Revive, Renew, Restore, Rebuild, and Rejoice" followed by an impression of an elderly man lying flat and gasping for breath. 

Pastor Duane knew that the elderly man represented a church that was dying and needed to be Revived, Renewed, Restored, and Rebuilt so that many could Rejoice.  God then began to direct Pastor Duane to Isaiah 60-62 as a scriptural foundation and directive for reviving the gentleman.  Pastor Duane shelved these thoughts for he was an Assistant Pastor at Lighthouse Assembly in Peoria and was rather busy with his duties there. In January of 1991 the District Secretary Treasurer, who Pastor Duane worked for as Youth and Music Ministers at Cottonwood Assembly for 6 years, approached him to be the Interim Pastor at a church in which the District had to remove the Pastor.  Pastor Duane decided to visit on a Saturday before committing to fill in and found his way to the old church in Wickenburg.  

At first it appeared that the building was locked up, but after going around the back, he found the back door to be open.  As Pastor Duane stepped through the door, he was met with an awful smell and in his heart he began to see the elderly man he had seen in his spirit six months earlier.  Little did he know at the time, that Wickenburg is the third oldest town in the State of Arizona and that the Church was the second or third oldest Assembly of God church in the State.  After approaching the Lighthouse Board and obtaining their blessing, Pastor Duane began to "fill in" for a time, until the District could secure a Pastor.  For the first six months, Lighthouse continued to pay Pastor's salary.  There were 13 people in the first service, which included Pastor Duane and his family.  But within just a few weeks, attendance had doubled.  By the time a year came around, the average attendance was 95.  By the third year, attendance had reached 150 and arrangements had to be made to use the High School across the street for ministry.  We have many wonderful memories of Church in the old gym on South Tegner.  

The School District allowed us to use the gym for about six years free of charge.September 22, 1996, in conjunction with our 70th Anniversary as an Assembly of God Church, we broke ground for the first of three main structures we propose to build.  The first being our Education (soul) building.  The second will be a Gym (body) with a commercial kitchen and showers, and the third will be the Sanctuary (spirit) on the elevated part of the property.January of 1997 we were issued a building permit to begin and for the next few winters, MAPS RV'ers (retired Assembly of God people with RV's) from across the nation began coming to Wickenburg to assist us in building our first structure.Easter Sunday of 2000 we had our very first service at Mount Hope Assembly of God at 550 Penn Lane.  In February of 2001, in conjunction with Gold Rush Days and our 75th Anniversary, we dedicated the building.  On May 5, 2002 Wickenburg Assembly of God officially changed its name to Mount Hope Assembly of God, regained our sovereignty from the District, was set in order with a new constitution and bylaws, and Pastor Duane Middleton was installed as Lead Pastor after over 10 years as an Interim.