In 1979, 40 people put their dreams into the hands of God, and their faith into action, as they began a journey which would eventually lead them to a hill in Central Pennsylvania and to a congregation of over 3,500.
Little did they know, however, that these things would come to pass as they formed Christian Life Assembly and began to hold services in a small Camp Hill restaurant, under the guidance of their Assemblies of God District Home Missions Director.
It wasn’t long before CLA had its first full-time pastor, and the steps to being a church family had gained momentum. The congregation grew quickly and the need for their own building took the church to a renovated warehouse in 1980. Two years later, the opportunity to purchase a small church building on Route 15 arose and they relocated once again. That same year, Paul Wislocky became the pastor, and in 1984, under his loving and faithful leadership, the church was able to purchase a portion of the present property, which overlooks the Camp Hill community. Construction began that fall and with much prayer, excitement, and anticipation, the congregation moved into this new facility on September 15, 1985.
As adjacent property became available, CLA purchased the land which now makes up the current total of 55 acres. With the addition of the Christian Life Center and Youth Center over several years, a healthy and vibrant congregation emerged. Quickly outgrowing the space available, they were more than happy to have the ‘challenge’ of making room for the expanding ‘family’!
With this ‘challenge’ in mind, the initial planning and design of the present sanctuary and expanded facilities began in 2000. From the start of construction, to the very first service in the completed sanctuary on September 4, 2004, the Lord had His hand on the expansive project.
After an incredible 25 years of ministry, Christian Life Assembly’s beloved shepherd, Pastor Paul, announced his retirement in March of 2006, and celebrated his final Sunday with us on January 28, 2007. After much prayer and searching, the church welcomed its new lead pastor, Wayde Wilson, his wife Sonya and their family in February 2008.
We can only look back and be incredibly thankful for those faithful 40, who put their dreams up as an investment in the future of Christian Life Assembly. The returns on that investment can be seen and felt in the hearts and lives of those who call CLA ‘home’. It is our intention and our calling to continue to spread the incredible news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ throughout our community and beyond, by living out our mission statement to “Love God, Love People, and Change the World.”