The Church family began in the living room of Evangelist Winnifred Thompson along with a small group of dedicated saints known as the Apostolic Prayer Band. The weekly prayer meeting quickly developed into something more than the living room could handle. We were faced with the challenge of finding a place of worship. Brother and Sister Swaby, who were also members of this prayer group, offered their basement to host the services. Our membership, which started out as a small prayer group, had blossomed into something promising. Souls were being baptized, reclaimed, inspired, and refreshed. There was hardly any room for shouting. On numerous occasions, we were filled to capacity. As the church began to expand, another change in location was imminent.
In 1986, we became a tenant at the Royal Inn, but this was not convenient for us. We were not able to operate and conduct services the way we desired. The need for a larger place of worship became vital. It was during that same year we became incorporated as the First United Tabernacle Church of Jesus Christ (Apostolic). After a long and diligent search, in 1987, the Lord provided an edifice that facilitated a better worship experience. The building was located at 32-34 Webster Place, Orange, NJ. As the growth of our church continued, several departments were established. In 1988, Elder Lloyd Faulknor was officially ordained as pastor of the congregation.
Nineteen eighty -nine marked a historical event—the burning of the Webster Place Church mortgage. Many individuals put on the name of Jesus Christ and several received the baptism of the Holy Ghost. Membership was extended to the newcomers, and our Webster Place Family doubled in size. Once again, we were faced with the need for adequate space to worship.
In May of 1996, during an anniversary service, Pastor Faulknor was presented with a flyer that reads “For Sale.” We needed more space, but we were thinking in terms of an expansion—not relocation. Pastor and the building fund committee members went to see an office building that was up for sale. The group made a unanimous decision that this property was appropriate and could be transformed to a place of worship. It was purchased and renovations subsequently began.
After several months of reconstruction, the office building was transformed into a beautiful edifice. Located at 425 South Jefferson Street, the building was now ready to host friends and family of the First United Tabernacle Church. December 13, 1997, marked the official opening of this sanctuary. The Mayor along with some members of the Orange Police Department escorted Pastor Faulknor and the church members through the streets of Orange.
In 2003, Pastor Lloyd Faulknor was elevated to the office of a Bishop. In 2004, Bishop Faulknor became the Senior Pastor, Evangelist Paulette Faulknor was appointed to the office of Co-Pastor, and Elder Courtney Lawrence was appointed to the office of an Associate Pastor of the church. In 2010, the church acquired the adjacent property to 425 South Jefferson Street. One of our primary goals for this property is a fully equipped Christian Day Care facility and the expansion of our soup kitchen in order to cater to the needs of the community.
During the year 2012, several note worthy events occurred. The institution formerly known as First United Tabernacle Church (F.U.T.C.) became First United Tabernacle International Ministries, Inc. (F.U.T.I.M.) with Bishop Lloyd L. Faulknor as the presiding prelate. In addition, the organization purchased two properties. The first location, at 576 Argyle Avenue, Orange, New Jersey has been set aside to host international guests during our conferences. The second location, in the township of Mamakating, New York is a 50 acre lot with two homes, swimming pool and a tennis court will be utilized as our Recreational complex and Retreat Center. The third location, in Longville Park, Clarendon Jamaica is the future church complex of F.U.T.I.M.