Celebrating 40 Years

On May 31st, 2021, Santa Clarita Baptist celebrates it's 40th anniversary. It has been 40 years of growing, learning, serving, and worshipping-- all centered upon the Word of God. Explore below to see how God has worked in and through SCBC since 1981.

Celebrating 40 Years

Home of Amos Clemmons
Completed Chapel at SCBC, 1981
Church sign on Luther Drive, 1981
Fellowship on 2nd Anniversary, 1982

Santa Clarita Baptist Church: the Beginnings

Tribute Video

Through the month of May, 2021, past and present attendees of SCBC participated in creating a video montage, or "Tribute," compiling our memories and gratitude to the Lord.

A Tale of Two Churches and How They Became One

After graduating from high school in 1957, Amos Clemmons moved from Polson, Montana to attend Los Angeles Baptist Theological Seminary.  Amos and Ernestene were married in 1960 and moved to Saugus, CA.   At the age of 22 Amos led a group of people who were gathered in their garage at 27206 Marchland Avenue in Saugus (now Canyon Country) on November 19, 1961. Pastor Amos reported that on that first day, “there were about 20 people in attendance along with a thousand flies.”

Under his pastoral leadership on November 19, 1962 this nucleus of people voted to incorporate as the “First Baptist Church of Saugus.”  The church grew and met in the school building that was located where Edwards Cinema now sits.  On May 4, 1966, Amos Clemmons enlisted in the United States Army and Thurman Fuller became the pastor in that year.  The First Baptist Church building construction began in 1968 on this 2-1/2 acre site where SCBC resides today. Canyon Country Christian School began in September 1972. Pastor James Reid was called to Pastor in 1976; Bruce M Anderson in 1976; and then his son, Bruce H. Anderson, in January 1981.

Only one mile away was a young, fast-growing church that was focused on outreach, fellowship, ministry, and proclaiming God’s Word.  As part of a church plant by Simi Baptist Temple in Simi Valley, Temple Baptist Church first met on January 11, 1976, in the Glass Bottle Blower Association building at 26525 Golden Valley Road (currently the area of Rattler’s BBQ) under the guidance of Pastor Richard Willoughby.

The church meeting place changed a few times from the former Hillside Hospital (now medical offices across from the bowling alley) to the Flowerpark Clubhouse at 15444 Nasturtium Drive.   Don Porter came as pastor in 1977 and a piece of property was purchased at 19554 Calla Way in Canyon Country.  Coming from Toledo Ohio, Pastor Don Sewell became the senior pastor of Temple Baptist Church in November 1980.

In 1981, Pastors Don Sewell and Bruce Anderson met to discuss the needs of both churches - Temple Baptist and First Baptist - and the possibility of a merger was discussed.  God led in a glorious way with overwhelming support from both churches as they met individually in April and May of 1981, to discuss the possibilities of merging the two churches.  The first meeting as one church was held on May 31, 1981 with a new name - “Santa Clarita Baptist Church.”  Don Sewell became the Senior Pastor and Bruce H. Anderson continued for one year as his associate pastor and as the school administrator.  

In the summer of 1982, the school changed to traditional teaching along with a name change to “Santa Clarita Christian School” and Gregg Pfister became the youth pastor and the school administrator.  In June 1983 Pastor Pete Mothershead came to us as the Minister of Discipleship and Evangelism.  Years prior while pastoring in Toledo, Ohio, Don Sewell led Pete and Mary, his wife, to the Lord and Pete had become the Minister of Evangelism and Outreach.

On May 19, 1985, Pastor Pete Mothershead became the senior pastor of SCBC.  

On May 26, 1991 Santa Clarita Baptist Church celebrated its 10-year anniversary.  Special speakers included Amos Clemmons (from First Baptist), Don Porter (from Temple Baptist), and Bruce H Anderson (pastor of First Baptist at the time of the merger). 

Pastor Pete Mothershead retired from the Senior Pastor position in February 2007 and continued his evangelistic ministry developing curriculum and teaching churches across the United States to share the gospel message.  In July 2008 Scott Basolo became the Senior Pastor before taking a position at The Master’s Seminary in August 2014.  In June 2015 Vaughn Park became Senior Pastor until returning to his prior home church in Grand Junction, Colorado to continue pastoring.

In August 2020 David Caldwell became SCBC’s Senior Pastor and he continues the faithful ministry of preaching and proclaiming God’s Word.   These men have poured their lives into the ministry and people of SCBC and we are so thankful for them!  

SCBC’s current pastoral staff includes Dr. Paul Plew, who recently celebrated his 30th anniversary as the SCBC Minister of Music (Dr. Plew started at SCBC on January 29, 1991). Dr. Mark Wilson oversees the K-12th grade ministry of Santa Clarita Christian School with an enrollment approaching 500 students and a goal of “teaching minds and training hearts for God.”  Pastor Wiley Kennedy oversees a variety of educational and serving ministries at SCBC and Dr. Matt McLain oversees the SCBC Youth Ministry. 

Today, Santa Clarita Baptist Church continues to minister to the people of the Santa Clarita Valley while supporting missionaries worldwide who are advancing the kingdom of God.   Over the past 40 years (and almost 60 years), there have been many people that God has brought into this fellowship to pray, teach, lead, serve, give, and use their giftedness to build up the body of Christ.   Out of love for God, His Word, and for His people, many have lovingly and sacrificially poured their lives into this SCBC ministry.   With God‘s leading, “this Tale of Two Churches” will continue to bring honor and glory to its Author.   This is just a brief record of the many mighty acts of God over the past 60 years and God deserves all of the credit and glory for what He has done! 

May God help each of us in the task that He has called His Church to do: 
  • Matthew 16:18 “… upon this Rock, I will build My Church”
  • 1 Corinthians 12:18 “God has placed each of the members in the body as it pleased Him.”  
  • Mark 12:31-32 “and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength … you shall love your neighbor as yourself”  
  • Matthew 28:19a “Go and make disciples of all nations”
  • Colossians 1:10 “Walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him”

Additional notes: 
Through internships, discipleship efforts, and the strategic location of The Master’s University and The Master’s Seminary, SCBC has been instrumental in pastoral development and sending men into the pastoral ministry including:

Pete Slusher (Central Point, Oregon), Jay Gauthier (El Monte, CA), Jim Hansen (Los Angeles, CA), Travis Flournoy (Weaverville, CA ),  Brandon Phillips (Gainesville, Florida), Dave Duron ( Meridian, Idaho), Jon Duncan (Pagosa Springs, CO), Dave Beddoe (Poulsbo, WA), Dave Trepanier (Evans City, PA), Norm Walker (Forest Ranch), Geoff Williams (Caldwell, ID), Andy de Ganahl (Burley, ID), Pete Austell (Madera, CA), Andrew Gilmore (Buena Park, CA), Landon Miller (Aeia, HI), Chips Ross (Fresno, CA), and Adam Waller (London, England) …. and many, many others have gone on to serve in various lay ministry roles in their local churches.

Current SCBC Leadership as of May 30, 2021:
SCBC Elders: David Caldwell (Senior Pastor), John Dennis, David Miller, and Keith Miller
SCBC Deacons:  Rich Cheever, Dave Douglas, Peter Gillies, Don Gilmore, Michael Ice, John Lentz
SCBC Pastoral Staff:  Paul Plew (Music), Wiley Kennedy (Teaching Ministry), Matt McLain ( Youth), Scott Gilmore (Young Families), Mark Wilson (SCCS Administrator). 



We started going to SCBC  in 1989 when our daughter started school at SCCS.  Mrs. Mary Mothershead was her first grade teacher. We decided to join the church in support of the schooling.  We have been blessed with the teaching of the church and school.  Pastor Pete Mothershead gave us the word each week and challenged us to live for the Lord in every part of our lives.  He even took the time out to visit all of us at the annual church camp out in Buellton.  With us being avid campers, we really enjoyed that time of fellowship with other church members at those camp outs.  The games that were played, the movie night on the big screen, the singing by the camp fire and the church service, made it a special event.  

We are especially grateful to the leadership of the church in going through the process of finding the right Pastors to lead our church over the recent years.  The sermons from all the members in our church who have studied the Bible for years and gave us the word during those times were greatly appreciated.  

We appreciate the leadership of Pastor Plew in Music.  We love to hear the stories of how the anthem's came about and the amazing stories of the people who wrote them.  The concerts at Easter and Christmas are always a blessing.  We so enjoy the annual summer lawn concerts and the talents that are brought to us.

We have truly been blessed and found the right church for our walk with the Lord.

Thanks to all who have been involved in making this a great church.

Ron & Nita Graham
Hi my name is Regis Wengel and I’m from Canada. I came down to Santa Clarita in 2013 to go to The Master's College. I graduated in 2016 and remained in California until 2017. Most of that time I was a member at SCBC. I mainly served in the audio visual ministry with Mario and Mike. Greetings if you're still there.

It was such a blessing to be a part of SCBC the short time that I was there. I have fond memories of the worship led by Dr. Plew, the evening concerts and events we would have, and the church potlucks were fantastic.

I was very blessed by the student adoption program. I made many friends through this. I am enormously thankful for Keith and Kim Miller for their constant love, mentorship, support, and encouragement. They kindly let me live with them for the better part of a year along with several other guys whom I became close friends with. I love and miss you all.

I was always thankful for the teaching at SCBC and for the men who stepped up to preach the year we were looking for a new pastor. I was encouraged by how much prayer, transparency, and care John Dennis and the other leaders had while searching for a new pastor. I never had any fear or concern over who they would pick.

My wife and I were blessed to get to know David and Caren Miller shortly before we left. We were appreciative of their wisdom and encouragement.
I know there’s many more friends I could mention and thank, but the Lord knows who you are. The church is a body of believers coming to gather to worship our great God and loving one another. SCBC was a wonderful example of that in my life.

Happy 40th Anniversary SCBC! May the Lord continue to build his church through you!
When we moved to this area eight years ago, finding a good church was a priority.  We were delighted when God led us to SCBC!  Not only did we hear faithful preaching of God’s Word, but two of our former junior highers (John Dennis and Joanna Durbin) were among the first members we met.  Not only did God answer our prayers but He did “exceedingly abundantly more than we ask or think.”  

John and Shirley Baird
We have been at SCBC since January, 1986. Five of our eight children were born while there, and all of our children were baptized while there.

The main reason we love SCBC is that, from the Church Constitution, to the leaders, to the laity there is a strong commitment to the authority of the scriptures. Also great preaching and music. So it's a great place to grow in our relationship with Jesus, and His gospel.

Philippians 3:9, "and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith".

Fred & Earline
and family
We are so grateful to God for bringing us to SCBC in 2013! We are grateful for the commitment to the Bible that characterizes this fellowship. It has been a blessing watching our kids grow and have good friends to play with each Sunday. God has used many friends here to challenge and encourage our family in the Lord! The Lord has also used SCBC in a great way with our family by having our two oldest girls baptized here and healing Carla from a 24 year illness that the doctors couldn't figure out! God is so Good!! He brought us to a wonderful Church who loves Him and tries to obey Him in every way! We are so thankful for this and glad we can be a part of it!!

Joe & Carla Weaver

Letters of Celebration

The following are some 40th anniversary notes of encouragement written in May 2021 to the SCBC Congregation from various pastors and people who were instrumental in the early and recent development of SCBC:

Donald J Sewell
First Senior Pastor of SCBC – 1981-1985
Thank you for the opportunity to share for the anniversary. It was very kind of you and I appreciate it. You all have remained a great part of my memories and blessings at SCBC.
The number 40 has a very significant place in Scripture. Without spending a lot of time on all the references, suffice to say that 40 generally symbolizes a period of testing, trial or probation. Those of you who have lived long enough would probably agree with that.
Forty years ago God in His Sovereignty had two mergers in mind. A small congregation at Temple Baptist Church was outgrowing their facilities. First Baptist of Saugus had the facilities to accommodate both congregations. God laid it on my heart to call Pastor Anderson and invite him to lunch. The rest is history. He graciously put us together and He is still blessing the labor of love and the faithfulness of this congregation. I am sure that those of you who have stayed here through the years are feeling blessed with God's faithfulness. Psa.117: 2 "Great is His love toward us and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever." I applaud all of you who have stayed by the ministry and kept the faith.

May God continue to bless the Santa Clarita Baptist Church.
Bruce Anderson 
Pastor of First Baptist Church of Canyon Country at the time of merger
Thank you for your note about the SCBC 40th anniversary.  My, how time flies. Thank you for your faithfulness to the Lord and to your church.

That first time when the two churches met, is still vivid in my memory.  It was so exciting to have the place filled with anticipation of what the Lord would do.  The singing was enthusiastic and there was such a good spirit.  We met with the combined deacon boards on several occasions, and it was evident that there was a spirit of unity.  Of all the church mergers this one was perhaps the easiest and that spirit of oneness continued on.  It was a privilege to be a part of what God was doing.  After a year, I and my family moved to San Jose to pastor a church there.

Heb. 13:1  "Let brotherly love continue.”  Have a wonderful time celebrating what God has done.  Yours in Christ, Bruce Anderson.

Linda & Dennis Harling – Temple Baptist Church members from start through the merger
Hope your 40th year celebration is both enjoyable and memorable at SCBC.
One of the most beneficial outcomes of our life at TBC and SCBC was the development and growth of our relationships as a church family.  Through participation in church activities and acts of service we created friendships that have lasted 40+ years.  As with any family, sometimes our church families have faced various challenges throughout the years.  But as a young couple with small children our church family at SCBC nurtured us in personal and group prayer and provided encouragement, accountability, advice, and personal and corporate friendship that has followed us wherever we’ve made our church home.  We challenge you to grow in your church family at SCBC.  If you do, then being in church and working together will become a habit you’ll never want to live without.
 Hebrews 10:25a – Not Forsaking the Assembling of Ourselves Together . . .

With our Love, Dennis and Linda Harling

Jerry and Linda Bade 
Early members at Temple Baptist Church and SCBC

To the Santa Clarita Baptist Church Family,
Our family became members of Temple Baptist Church in its early days. As in all start up churches, you wear several hats. On Saturday you’re doing janitor duties and on Sunday you could be in the nursery. As the church grew, we merged with First Baptist Church and became Santa Clarita Baptist Church (SCBC). Yes, a merger not the more common church split.

As the church continued to grow, I (Jerry) was on the building committee, ran the sound system for three services, and yes, still could be helping in the nursery.  I (Linda) became the church secretary, sang in the choir, worked in the nursery and taught two and three year old S.S.

Even though the Lord has moved us to new locations since then, we are truly thankful to the Lord and praise Him for bringing us to Temple Baptist and Santa Clarita Baptist at a critical time in our spiritual lives.  We are blessed to have been a part of this ministry in its beginning.

We just want you to keep in mind that as the church continues to grow you are still a member that needs to serve and not become a member that just wants to be served.
God has given us all a spiritual gift for serving in some area because we are a part of the body of Christ.
Happy 40th Anniversary and may God continue to bless Santa Clarita Baptist Church.

Love in Christ,
Jerry and Linda Bade
Jerry - Philippians  4:13:  “ I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (NKJV)
Linda - I John 5:13: “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life . . .” (KJV)

Pete and Linda Austel 
Attended SCBC from 1989 through 2002 / Sunday School teacher for the senior saints, deacon, chairman, then on SCBC Staff as Business Administrator overseeing Building 200 construction.    Left SCBC to become Senior Pastor in Madera, CA

Dear SCBC Family, I first want to say congratulations to the family of Santa Clarita Baptist Church. Even after having been called to minister here in Madera, we still have fond memories of our time with you. A time that prepared us for our ministry at Madera Baptist Church. Even after accepting the Lord’s call to come, to leave the family of SCBC was an emotional time yet all the while having confidence in His call.
We look back on our time with you as a time of preparation for the Lord’s call on our lives. We are forever grateful for Pastor Pete Mothershead’s encouragement and leadership.
May the Lord continue to bless you all as you continue to serve in the Santa Clarita Valley. Proverbs 3:5&6 comes to mind. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths”
Our love to you all,   Pete and Linda Austel
Jim and Joan Hansen 
Former Youth Pastor, now ministering to the Deaf and Deaf Blind in LA

We came to Santa Clarita Baptist church in 1986 where Jim served for a couple of years as senior high youth pastor while going back to school at The Master’s College (now University).  We had 2 girls and our first boy on the way.  As a young family there was great support and encouragement in raising our family.  Our second son was born while we were there.

In 1990 we became involved in the ministry with deaf-blind that we later joined as missionaries (1994).  We were greatly encouraged and supported in this endeavor and when we joined Biblical Ministries Worldwide we were sent out by Santa Clarita Baptist Church as your missionaries.  Our work here in Los Angeles has been greatly blessed by your part as you teamed with us.

SCBC was an important part of our children’s lives too, as they were being homeschooled and raised in this unique environment among deaf-blind.  Joan drove that route several times a week to keep them involved in the children’s and youth ministries.  Thank you to each one who had a part in Becky’s, Naomi’s, Jim’s and Jeremy’s lives, influencing them in Biblical teaching.  

Our children are gone from home and we find ourselves much more tied down to the ministry so do not get up there to be with you much – though we truly wish we could enjoy fellowship with you more often.  We know our church is upholding us in prayer as we continue until God leads us elsewhere.  
Knowing of your prayers and love for us is priceless!  Thank you, SCBC!

Serving with hearts and hands,
Jim and Joan Hansen
Deaf-blind ministry in Los Angeles

Scott and Karyn Basolo 
Former SCBC Senior Pastor
Dear SCBC Family,
Greetings from Karyn and me. I rejoice along with you at the Lord’s work over the past 40 years. As I consider all that the Lord has done in this wonderful body, I am so thankful to have been a small part of this ministry. I think of you so often and with such great fondness recognizing all that God did in me and my ministry through each of you.

As I reflect on the blessings of seeing people come to know Christ, baptisms, incredible fellowship, and the work of all the ministries and missionaries it makes me exude the greatest joy. I am so thankful for the leadership that the Lord has brought to SCBC and SCCS. The men who the Lord has now placed over these ministries are dear brothers in Christ who I love and respect greatly. I know that as the sweet family you are that you are embracing and supporting them fully so that both you and they may fulfill Hebrews 13:17. I pray weekly for these men and for your elders rejoicing in the Spirit’s work in that body.

I miss you all greatly and pray for God’s richest blessings on each and every one of you in this time of joyous celebration and for each meeting of your beloved congregation until the return of our glorious Lord and Savior Jesus Christ when we will again all be together for all eternity. Soli Deo Gloria.

Pastor Scott

Vaughn and Ronda Park – Former SCBC Senior Pastor 
Ronda and I appreciate the opportunity to relay our love and gratitude to the saints at Santa Clarita Baptist on the momentous occasion of the church’s 40th anniversary.  We are even more blessed, and grateful to the Lord for the years He gave us in His service alongside so many faithful servants.
Thinking back on my time as Senior Pastor at SCBC, one particular verse that comes to mind is Romans 1:16, because of the church’s love for the Gospel and unwavering desire for it to be proclaimed. In a culture where the Gospel isn’t always exalted or appreciated, the saints at Santa Clarita Baptist have never wavered in their zeal for the Message that matters most.
Ronda and I are with you all in spirit today, rejoicing in our every remembrance of the years our Lord gave us with you. Keep on standing firm for the gospel!
1 Corinthians 9:24

Dave and Beth Duron
Dave served as our youth pastor for a period of time.   Dave is an associate pastor at First Baptist Church of Meridian, Ohio.
We were blessed of God to be with you from 1992-2004. Your investment in our lives was so pivotal in our overall maturity and growth in Christ. All three of our children were saved during our time at SCBC and two of them were baptized by Pastor Pete. The church leadership’s investment in us is still yielding benefits in our current ministries and in our personal lives. We were so glad to be a part of many short-term missions trips sent from SCBC & SCCS.   We are thankful for the years that we were a part of the SCBC family. Many of you are still life-long friends. We want to encourage you to continue in your faithfulness to the Lord and His Word. We miss you. Our prayers echo the Apostle Paul’s prayer for Ephesus- We pray “that you would be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man” and that you would “know the love of Christ which passes knowledge”. God bless you as you continue in faithfulness and love. 
-Pastor Dave & Beth Duron