Our History

In 1997, Pastor Jonathan L. McKnight began Sanctuary of Praise Ministries with 30 members in Orlando’s southwest community. Today, Sanctuary of Praise Ministries has become one of Orlando’s most progressive churches and is a multicultural congregation of more than 2,000 members.

Pastor Jonathan L. McKnight and The Sanctuary of Praise Ministries congregation consistently serve in the distribution of food to neighborhoods throughout Orlando, Clermont, Eatonville, Sanford, Winter Garden, and Apopka; feeding more than 20,000 families, funded solely from the ministry’s outreach program.  The ministry’s food and clothing banks provide assistance to an average of 700 families each month, and has been declared one of central Florida’s largest non-grant funded food distribution centers by Second Harvest Food Bank.

During various U.S. and international tragic events and humanitarian needs, compassion’s call provoked Sanctuary of Praise to donate goods and monetary gifts to hurricane victims in the Gulf States, as well as in Florida.  The ministry’s humanitarian endeavors reach beyond the shores of the United States to support missions in Jamaica, Nassau Bahamas, Freeport Bahamas, Africa, Trinidad, and Haiti, with the provision of food, clothing, housing, orphanages, education, medical assistance and other goods and services totaling over $750,000 to victims and mission outreach.

The church consistently participates in evangelical and practical outreach efforts to prison inmates throughout Florida, including revivals and crusades inside prison and correctional facilities located in Orlando, Coleman, Lowell, Bushnell, and Starke.

Pastor McKnight and his congregation are not strangers to the inner-city, as they facilitate street tent revivals and street prayer meetings in some of the region’s high crime-ridden and impoverished communities. From these efforts, Pastor Jonathan L. McKnight has been honored with the presentation of four Good Citizenship Awards from the Orlando Police Department, two Gold Keys to the City of Orlando, multiple declarations from City, County, and State governments. Additionally, Pastor Jonathan McKnight received the Heritage Award from the Daughters of Rizpah Ministries founded by Reverend Jack McCullough.

Pastor McKnight, JLM Ministries Team, and Sanctuary of Praise members continue to facilitate annual conferences that include the international relationship conference, “I Did It in the Name of Love,” providing practical solutions for matters of the heart. Additionally, the “Brining It All Together” conference is designed to foster healing in the body of Christ while uniting the hearts of pastors and ministers throughout Central Florida; and the international “Travailing into the Supernatural” Prayer Conference empowers participants to pursue God’s presences through the power of prayer. The annual conferences have featured world-renowned guests including Bishop T.D. Jakes, Dr. Creflo Dollar, Prophetess Juanita Bynum, Bishop Noel Jones, Bishop Neil Ellis, Pastor Marvin Winans, CeCe Winans, Pastor Beverly Crawford, Vicki Yohe’, William Murphy, The Binions, the late Rosalyn McDuffie, and more. Pastor McKnight and his ministry teams are occasionally found laboring alongside international ministries in partnership to strengthen and support the efforts of those hosting conferences in the Central Florida region.

Dr. Jonathan L. McKnight is the founder of the P.E.A.C.E Prayer Army, a non-denominational, global collaborative movement of more that 10,000 intercessors and believers united through prayer to strategically combat the forces of the enemy while unifying the Body of Christ. The P.E.A.C.E Prayer Army is moving to enlist 5 million intercessors by the year 2020 for the purpose of empowering individuals and families to experience total victory and triumph in the face of life’s challenges by releasing the sound of effectual prayer.