Grace Community Church (California)

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Grace Community Church
Grace Community Church Worship Center
Country  United States
Denomination Non-Denominational
Website www.gracechurch.org
History
Founded 1956
Clergy
Senior pastor(s) John F. MacArthur

Grace Community Church is a non-denominational, evangelical megachurch founded in 1956 and located in Sun Valley, California. Noted speaker and religious radio host John MacArthur is the senior pastor of Grace Community Church. As of 2008, the average weekly attendance was 8,258.[1]

History[edit]

Grace Community Church Aerial View

Founded as Grace Community Church of the Valley. The congregation held its first public service on July 1, 1956 calling Don Householder to be its founding pastor. Within a few years, the church had moved to its present location on Roscoe Boulevard and the decision was made to hold two Sunday morning services to accommodate the growing congregation.

Following Householder's death in 1965, Richard Elvee was called to be pastor and the church continued to grow under his leadership until he died in 1968. In February 1969, John F. MacArthur assumed the pastorate call. During the early days of MacArthur's ministry the church doubled in size every two years which led to the building of the Family Life Center in 1971 and a new Worship Center in 1977.[2] In 1972, Moody Monthly magazine published a feature article about the congregation titled "The church with nine hundred ministers".[3]

Distinctives[edit]

Grace sign

The Grace Community Church practices an Evangelical Protestant theology and is generally considered to be Calvinist although officially, it is classified as non-denominational. Grace Community Church holds to the beliefs of the cessation of spiritual sign gifts (such as speaking in tongues), Lordship salvation, and the sufficiency of Scripture.[4] Noted for speaking out against movements such as the prosperity gospel and the emergent church, the church also adheres to the view that Christian giving should derive voluntarily from the heart, not from a fixed, mandatory percentage. Church Pastor John MacArthur unequivocally states that a person who truly believes what Roman Catholicism teaches, is not saved.[5][original research?] In addition he stated that the "theology of Islam is false."[6][original research?]

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References[edit]

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