Central Assembly of God: History
Central Assembly of God started in 1949 under the leadership of Rev. Howard M. Barfoot. The original name of the church was Westside Assembly, and the small congregation worshipped in the Teamster’s Union Hall on North Third Avenue. It was there that the church was organized and joined in affiliation with the Northwest District Council of the Assemblies of God (Now known as the Northwest Ministry Network)
In 1951, the congregation purchased the present location on South Third Avenue and, at the same time, purchased the Old Ahtanum school building. In January of 1952, the work of dismantling the old school began and the materials from the old school building were cleaned and repurposed in the construction of the new building, which began on Labor Day weekend of the same year.
The congregation moved into the unfinished building in January of 1953 and continued working tirelessly to finish the project. The completed building was dedicated on February 22, 1960.
In September of 1958, Rev. Barfoot resigned, and Rev. John H. Clark assumed the pastorate. A year later, a merger with Washington Avenue Assembly of God was approved, and the church name was changed from Westside Assembly to the present name, Central Assembly of God. The large “stone” house across the street from the church was also purchased around this time in order to increase Sunday School space and provide additional parking.
Rev. Leland V. Gross assumed the pastorate in May of 1965, and during his tenure, Central Assembly engaged in several major building projects, including the addition of a 16,000 square foot educational wing. The church began to purchase houses on the east side of the building and was eventually able to remove the houses to add additional parking spaces.
In 1980, Rev. Richard Malvaney replaced Leland Gross and faithfully served Central Assembly until his retirement in December of 2013. Pastor Malvaney and his wife Darlene still reside in Yakima; and Richard serves as an elder for the Northwest Ministry Network providing, prayer support and counselling to other pastors as needed.
Our present pastors, Gerry and Mindy Galbreath were voted in on February 9, 2014 and assumed the lead role on March 2, 2014.
We are thankful for many years of great vision and leadership and for everyone who has called Central Assembly home. It is the faithful volunteers that have made Central Assembly what it is today. We honor the past but look forward to an even greater future as we continue to hear from God and invest in what He is doing in the Yakima Valley and around the world.