The ministry of Cathedral Of Deliverance was founded in July 1984 by Bishop Charles Bernard Eichelberger, Sr.. The first worship service was held on the first Sunday in July of 1984, in the home of Bishop Charles and First Lady Cynthia Eichelberger. Worship services were held in their home until November 1986. This small group of worshippers was then known as Fellowship Holiness Church.
On November 6, 1986, the late Bishop James F. Brown of Richmond, Virginia, Southern Jurisdictional Bishop of the Mount Sinai Holy Church Of America, asked Bishop Eichelberger to unite his small group of worshippers with a few remaining worshippers at a church site that had been abandoned by a former pastor. Bishop Eichelberger accepted and Bishop Brown officially appointed him pastor of what was then known as Mount Sinai Holy Church, located at 1146 W. 21st Street, Jacksonville, Florida. Bishop Eichelberger dropped the name of Fellowship Holiness Church and assumed the name of the existing ministry, Mount Sinai Holy Church. The building was in total disarray, in violation of city codes and standards and subject to being condemned. With a total of ninety-six dollars and a few willing people, Bishop Eichelberger began what seemed an almost impossible mission of rebuilding and remodeling not only the dilapidated building but also rekindling hope in the hearts of those who felt they had been misused and abandoned by the former pastor.
The ministry continued under the name of Mount Sinai Holy Church until November 7, 1989. In an effort to eradicate the negative image of the existing ministry‘s name, Bishop Eichelberger submitted a signed petition to the Board of Directors of the Mount Sinai Holy Church of America requesting permission to change the church’s name from Mount Sinai Holy Church to Fellowship Christian Church. In November 1989, the name change was approved and Bishop Eichelberger registered the new name in Tallahassee, Florida.
After the death of Bishop James F. Brown, and as a result of some unfavorable transitions within the organization, Bishop Eichelberger began sensing the need to cut ties with the Mount Sinai Holy Church Of America organization. In September, 1995, in spite of the hard work and thousands of dollars spent to renovate and modernize the church property, Bishop Eichelberger made the decision to leave the organization and vacate the building.
Bishop Eichelberger was informed of church property that was for sale and available at 126 E. 7th Street, Jacksonville, Florida. Knowing that the church did not have sufficient funds to purchase the property, Bishop Eichelberger met with the Realtor representing the property in an effort to see what were the possibilities of acquiring the property. After much prayer and negotiations a lease purchase agreement was signed. On November 1, 1995, Bishop Eichelberger and congregation moved into the edifice at 7th and Market Streets. This move was a tremendous step up from the previous place of worship on West 21st Street. The new location had over 5,800 square feet of worship and office space, ample parking and two additional pieces of property. For more than 10 years this was the place the ministry could call its home.
Bishop Eichelberger believes that a church’s name should say something about its mission and purpose. We believe that man can be delivered and set free from every negative and evil force by exercising faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. On November 16, 1999, Articles of Amendment to the Articles of Incorporation changing the name from Fellowship Christian Church to Faith Deliverance Assembly were filed with the State of Florida.
In April, 2006, Bishop Eichelber made the decision to sell the property at 7th Street to SRG Homes. The proceeds from the sale of the property would enable the church to acquire even better facilities for ministry. For approximately ten months, the ministry would go through a period of transition with regards to a place of worship.
Although the search for a place of worship seemed almost hopeless, and after much disappointment, heartache, financial woes, setbacks and difficulties, and dealings of false brethren, God opened the “Red Sea” of impossibilities and Bishop Eichelberger led the people of God to a new place of worship. On March 16, 2007, the church family took possession of the present property located at 1939 Belvedere Street; the place we had claimed and God had said was ours almost ten months earlier; a place that provides approximately eighteen thousand square feet of space to accommodate the various needs of ministry.
The word ‘Cathedral’ properly describes our worship facility and the word ‘Deliverance’ speaks of the ongoing work of God in the lives of His people that assemble in this house.
We have witnessed the providential hand of God upon this ministry. God has provided for us and opened doors that were nailed shut. We have witnessed His saving grace upon the lives of those who have entered our doors seeking refuge. Miracles of healing have been wrought in our midst and we have been eye witnesses of yokes being broken and destroyed off the lives of people. Our numerical growth seems to be far behind that of other ministries, nevertheless, God continually adds to our church dedicated men and women whose hearts are turned toward Him in love. In spite of what it appears to be we know that God has spoken good concerning this ministry and we are confident that the vision and dreams of our spiritual leader are yet hastening to fulfillment. We know that the best is yet to be.