In April of 1982, Jerald Staten his young wife Linda Staten, their four children, and friend of the family, Pete DeTemple moved to Lexington Park from Sedona, Arizona. Pastor Staten had been stationed at Patuxent River Navy Base during his service as a part of the United States Navy. He felt the call of God upon his life to come back to the small town of Lexington Park and begin a work. Upon arriving, it was confirmed that there was no established church preaching the essential truths of the Word of God.
The first residence, shared by the young family and DeTemple, proved to be the beginning of the Living Hope Church family. The small living room was used as a multi-purpose room, where hungry souls were fed the word of God, worshipped together, and joined in a strong bond of unity. The garage served as a Sunday School classroom where children from the community began to come and learn about Jesus.
As the work grew, the need for a larger meeting place became evident. The next residence of Pastor Staten and his family, less than a mile from our former Midway Drive location, would serve as the church home for the now thriving young church. The basement of the house would be transformed into a place of powerful worship. The congregation began to grow as many came, attracted by the powerful worship and the message of the Mighty God in Christ.
Again, the congregation outgrew its place of worship, and in the spring of 1984 the purchase of an old C&P telephone building on Midway Drive was made. The early days of the church bring memories of badly damaged tile floors, and chairs of every fabric, color, shape and size. From a first glance this young body didn't have much to offer, but the beauty of the Pentecostal Church had far more to offer than glamour or stained glass windows!
In the next 20 years that would follow, the "Big White Building on Midway Drive" has served as a residence of Hope and Reformation. Countless testimonies of addicts, lives without hope, marriages already in divorce court changed by the power of the Almighty God!
In 2006, the call of God once again whispered into the ear of the founding father, Pastor Jerald Staten. The call this time was to transition the Pastoral authority to another, and to heed the call to evangelize Washington, D.C. In January of 2007, Jason Staten and his wife Valerie Staten assumed the role as Pastor of the First United Pentecostal Church of St. Mary's County. Pastor Jerald and Linda Staten now reside as the Bishop over the local church, as well as the congregations that they currently Pastor in Washington D.C. As a means of honoring the vision that his father had brought to St. Mary's county and in obedience to the voice of God, Pastor Jason Staten and the local body amended the church's name to Living Hope First United Pentecostal Church. Living Hope has grown from its humble beginnings to a church that touches hundreds of lives every year. The church is known throughout the community as a church that stands firmly upon the word of God, is blessed with members from every race and every culture, and relies upon the Power of God!