Whilst being officially recorded and registered as the Elim Fellowship, Ammanford, we are actually situated in the district of Pantyffynnon just on the outskirts of the Town, albeit the two have been linked over many years.
The roots of the original Elim Church building that was demolished in 2013 go back to the early part of the last century and indeed indirectly to 1881 when the Bethany Methodist Church was built in Wind St, Ammanford.
Following the effects of the Welsh Revival in 1904 and the increase in numbers, Bethany built a ‘Chapel’ in Pantyffynnon Road under the name of ‘Peniel’, the name of which was probably taken from the account in Genesis 32v30 where Joseph describes Peniel as a place where he, “saw God, face to face”.The original building was constructed in 1905 but was purely used as a branch Sunday School and in later years a house of prayer. This function continued for many years.
In April 1984 the building, which was by then used very little, was acquired by the ‘Elim Foursquare Gospel Alliance’ as a new Church plant and initially pastored by the Rev.J.Leonard. This in turn was handed on in 1989 to Pastor W.Price until his departure in 1995. By this time he had established strong links with the City Elim Church in Dyfatty St,Swansea.
By 1995/6 following a period of several months when the future of the fellowship was in question, a group of local Christians, eager to know more about God and looking for a place to worship, became associated with the City Church in Swansea. For a short while the group worshipped at Swansea but always with a love for their home Town and a desire to return. Following several discussions it was agreed that once again ‘Peniel’ should become a spiritual home to the Ammanford and Pantyffynnon communities and the group were re-located to its current location. The initial months were taken up in renovation and restoration and the church re-launched in September 1996.
Over the last 20 years the church has been led by several able pastors at different times. A significant moment happened in 2009, when under the Leadership of Steve Nancarrow it was agreed that a new building was essential to meet the needs of the Community. With this in mind a team was set up to seek funding from the various grants available. With the #370k raised, plus existing funds, the team were able to appoint an Architect and then a Contractor to initially demolish the old building and construct a new one on the same site. This work was completed in January 2014.
Another significant moment occurred in December 2017 when the Fellowship linked up with a body known as the People’s Church who had previously worshipped in nearby Cross Hands for a number of years. The combined church, which is now under the banner of the Gateway Elim, Ammanford Church, is led by Pastor Alan Hamilton and his wife, Jackie.
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