“Remembering God's past faithfulness reignites our present faith.”

- Jerry Gillis

If we look back it's only so that we can look forward with clarity. As we recall the history of The Chapel, we continually see God's grace on display. Much has changed since 1961 when our local church began. But what hasn't changed is a relentless desire to preach the Gospel of Jesus. The Chapel has always been committed to saturating the community of Western New York with this Good News: reaching every available person by every available means at every available time. Through these repeated opportunities, thousands have said, "Yes," to Jesus since 1961 – and we have been blessed to be in the front row to see God's activity unfold. It is through this lens that we appreciate our past while we have faith for the future.

January 22, 1961

The Chapel holds its first services with founding Pastor James Andrews. The young church meets on Sundays at the Park School of Buffalo, with midweek gatherings in Andrews' childhood home across the street on Harlem Road.

October 1961

The Chapel purchases a parcel of land on North Forest Road in Amherst, at that time considered to be a rural area.

December 1962

The first of many buildings on North Forest Road is complete and the first Sunday services were held.

March 1965

The facilities are quickly outgrown, and a larger worship center is constructed to accommodate the growth of the congregation.


A major addition to the property on North Forest includes a brand new worship center that seats 1,200 people.

December 1999

Founding Pastor, James Andrews, passes away at age 65. Before his death, he invited Al Cockrell to begin a season of transition at The Chapel. Pastor Al becomes Senior Pastor in May 2000.

August 2002

Jerry Gillis is hired as co-Pastor of The Chapel to serve and lead beside Pastor Al.

May 2005

Due to explosive growth during the previous 5 years, the final services are held at the North Forest Road church campus. For months, four identical Sunday services were necessary to accommodate the number of people who call The Chapel “home.”

June 5, 2005

The first Sunday at the CrossPoint Campus. Pastors Al and Jerry preach a message together, “Where Glory Belongs.”

September 2006

On September 3, Pastor Al celebrates 40 years in ministry and 7 years at The Chapel as he steps down as co-Pastor. On September 10, Pastor Jerry preaches his first message as Lead Pastor of The Chapel and announces the very first church plant in the history of our church.

April 2007

The Chapel at Elmwood celebrates its first worship service at the Regal Cinema in Buffalo.

April 2010

The Chapel at Lockport launches as a video-venue campus at The Palace Theatre in Lockport, making The Chapel one church in multiple locations.

May 2012

The Chapel at Elmwood (renamed Renovation Church) becomes a fully autonomous local church that is now a strategic partner of The Chapel.

June 2014

The Chapel at Lockport relocates to 25 Walnut Street in downtown Lockport.

October 2014

The Chapel at Cheektowaga launches at the Regal Cinemas in the Walden Galleria Mall.