In the Beginning...
The work started early in 1932 when some regular listeners of Rev. Paul Rader's Chicago Gospel Tabernacle radio program desired to establish a branch of Rader's Tabernacle in Appleton, Wisconsin. On Feb. 14th, the Rev. William McBirnie preached to the first Alliance gathering at the YMCA in downtown Appleton. 50-60 people eventually purchased land at the corner of Badger & Story streets. On June 5th of that year, the first worship service was held under the name "Appleton Courier Tabernacle". Rev. Paul Rader conducted the dedication ceremonies and returned in the Fall of 1932 to conduct several evangelistic evening services at the new Tabernacle. The Church officially transferred its affiliation to the Christian & Missionary Alliance in October of 1939. (Images courtesy of Wheaton Archives & Special Collections, Wheaton College, IL)
A Growing Congregation
The Church enjoyed steady growth and began outgrowing its original location. The Congregation purchased The Emmanuel United Brethren Church located at the corner of Franklin & N. Durkee. In 1969, the Church moved to a third location on N. Durkee & E. Capitol Dr. Ground was broken for a 550-seat Worship Center, Fellowship Hall, and additional area, more than doubling the existing square footage of the Church. In 1998, the Congregation agreed on a strategy to become a Regional, Full-Service Church, and called Rev. Dennis Episcopo to come and lead the effort.
Making More Room
In 2000, the "Making Room Adventure" began, to prepare for building a Phase 1 ($10 million) campus on 42 acres purchased at the corner of Highway 41 and County Rd. A. In 2003, the first service was held at the new building. The Church Congregation exploded to an average attendance of 3,000 by 2010 and was named by Outreach Magazine as one of the fastest-growing congregations in America. In 2012, the completion of a Phase 2 ($25 million) expansion of the Alliance Church campus was completed, which included a Sports Plex Center, a 2,000-seat Worship Center, and an Indoor Hub Area.