The Illsley Family | Johnathan, Erica, & kids
Johnathan Illsley, Pastor
Pastor Illsley is a native of North Phoenix, graduating from Barry Goldwater High School and attending Cornerstone Baptist Church most of his childhood. After graduating from Heartland Baptist Bible College with a pastoral degree in 2009, he worked on the pastoral staff of a church in Rio Rancho, NM for over 5 years. His ministry experience has included leading the music and choir, leading Master Clubs, being a police chaplain, and teaching children and adults in various classes. Moving back to the valley in 2015, he and his family assisted Pastor Scott Naill to start Pleasant Valley Baptist Church in north Phoenix and gained some experience for planting Hope Baptist. In August of 2017, Pastor Naill and the rest of PVBC merged with First Baptist Bible Church in Glendale and Johnathan became the music director shortly thereafter.
During the time in PVBC and FBBC, he worked in the Sunnyslope neighborhood and began to become burdened for the community's need for the gospel. In March of 2018, God burdened his heart to begin preparing to start a new work in this area. On March 26, 2019 he was ordained and sent by FBBC to begin this new work with his family.
Erica Illsley, Pastor's Wife
Erica grew up in Midland, Texas and lived in a Christian home. At the age of four she accepted Christ as her Saviour. At church camp, at the age of twelve she felt the Lord was impressing upon her heart to become a missionary to Africa. After high school graduation she attended Heartland Baptist Bible College. She majored in missions and also graduated in 2009. While she was a single college student God worked in her heart to be surrendered and available to any way God would lead her. Although she has never been to Africa she is happy to now work with her children as a homeschooling mother. Her favorite things to do are writing about ministry topics, looking for rosey-faced lovebirds and vermilion flycatchers, and visiting the Desert Botanical Gardens when she can.
Johnathan and Erica initially met on the college shuttle that took students back and forth to work. They were married in September of 2004 and have been married for 15 years. They have six children and have been homeschooling for many years. In their family time they enjoy watching Oklahoma Sooners football games, and playing games. They enjoy serving the Lord together especially in music ministry and singing as a family.
Our Goals | What we plan to do in Sunnyslope
Our goal is to establish Hope Baptist Church to be a self-supporting Body of Christ by:
- Reaching people with the Gospel of Christ
- Baptizing people that have trusted in Christ
- Discipling people to become like Christ