A little about us…



The Hope Center

The Hope Center refers to two distinct non-profit organizations – Hope Center Tabernacle and Hope Center Arts. Both organizations work synergistically toward influencing society in a manner that promotes their Christ-based ideals, empowering both individuals and families. Equipped with a solid biblical foundation, the people and ministries of the Hope Center are constantly inventing and reinventing ways to impact and transform this increasingly visual and auditory world in positive and constructive ways. For more information on Hope Center Arts visit us on www.HopeCenterArts.org.

Hope Center Tabernacle

Through compelling teaching and preaching coupled with a powerful worship arts ministry, Hope Center Tabernacle has had a transformative impact both locally and globally by promoting an honest and complete presentation of the good news of Jesus Christ in new and creative ways. Hope Center Tabernacle strives to develop people whose characters reflect the person and life of Jesus Christ. Holiness, faithfulness, and loving attitudes are modeled and taught through prayer and Bible study, solid preaching, discipleship classes and small groups. Everything we do at Hope Center Tabernacle is done to support our mission to (1) save the lost, (2) heal the saved, (3) train the healed, and (4) send the trained.


On August 5th, 1996, Rev. Mario & Leigh Gonzalez took over the pastorate of Calvary Assembly of God, a small church with around 30 adherents on a typical Sunday morning. They met in a small facility we own at 43 Charles Street in Jersey City, now home to INO Kids (our Kid’s ministry) and Li’l Masters Preschool. Only about 150 people could be crammed into the small building.

In March of 2000, armed with a vision they had for utilizing the arts to reach the culture and their region for Christ, they became nationally appointed U.S. missionaries and began a project called Hope Center Arts. With the help and support of the church and it’s membership, HCA is able to produce approximately 40 amazing events a year, including concerts, productions, dinner theater and art exhibitions both at its facility and in locations around the world.  The church, now known as Hope Center Tabernacle, has weekly adherents of about 700 people.

In 2008, Hope Center Tabernacle moved into its new custom built facility at 110 Cambridge Avenue right in its neighborhood, an artistic enclave known as Jersey City Heights. That building now serves as its main worship space and executive offices. The new building houses a sanctuary and theatre space, an art gallery, dance studio, a fully equipped café, an art studio, and much more.


Jesus is not only at the center of our lives, He is the center of everything we do at Hope Center Tabernacle.  Our goal is to help everyone that we come into contact with to live authentic, biblical lives to their fullest potential (John 10:10) – Lives of peace and purpose (Ephesians 2:13-15).

Our Youth

The guiding principle that both propelled and steered our senior pastors in forming and developing all ministries at the Hope Center from its inception was to build a church that younger generations would want to call their home and be proud of. This prayer has been fulfilled through the various ministries engineered to allow our youth to find their place in Christ, in ministry and in society.


Deep down inside, we all want that gold star on the teacher’s board. When we reconnect with God we learn of just how much He loves every one of us despite our particular circumstances.  We finally realize that our life’s journey has always been in the heart of God. Even when we were totally lost, God managed to protect us and guide us to where we are today. We are encouraged by His word and through it we find the keys to living out our lives to the absolute fullest – we realize that God has put up a gold star with our name beside it. At the Hope Center our goal is not only to find encouragement in God, but to allow ourselves individually to be a source of encouragement to those at our jobs, schools or neighborhoods who are still searching for that elusive star in their lives.


You are at your best when you are involved in loving and serving others. Our love and commitment to God is ultimately demonstrated by our love and commitment for each other (John 13:35). When we refresh others, we too are refreshed. As such, we should strive to be generous. Generous with our time, heart and resources.  Everyone at the Hope Center is encouraged to involve themselves in the active service of God by participating in the amazing ministry opportunities available at the Hope Center Tabernacle – all of which are dedicated to demonstrating God’s amazing love for all of us.


Friendship was designed by God to bring joy and meaning to our lives. God places us in community to encourage each other, lift each other up and share in the ups and downs of the journey. That’s why we encourage everyone to be in a HCT Life Group. Life Groups are all about biblical fellowship, friendship and fun.

If you are interested in joining a Life Group near you, contact Charlie Lopez.

Discipleship | God’s Word

God expects everyone of us to make disciples (Matt. 28:19-20). Effective ministry is not merely about expanding church attendance. It is about teaching people how to live out their lives joyously in Christ, overcoming all of the barriers that society places in their way. This can only be achieved once we learn to internalize and embrace God’s word. To this end, we have Bible studies throughout the week. A foundation curriculum is taught every Tuesday night, when those new to our fellowship can become a part of our church family.  For those unable to regularly make these meetings because of their professional or scholastic responsibilities, there is a professional track available that combines online instruction and mentoring. No matter where you are in the social strata, there is a place for you at the Hope Center where you can grow to your fullest potential.