The 25-year history of this congregation of believers must be recorded as ACTS of the Holy Spirit and proof of God’s faithfulness. Therefore it is actually HIS STORY. From one development to the other God gave the pastor a vision that seemed impossible to men...BUT GOD.
It was in April 1947 that Ray and Ruth Schoch was invited to pastor a small band of 35 Christians that worshipped in a little remodeled bungalow on the corner of Maple and Adams Street in Glendale, California. They named their place of worship “MAPLE CHAPEL”, but kept their eyes on God and on the whole world as a challenge to bring the Gospel to all creatures. From the very beginning they showed a keen interest in missionary enterprise. This has enabled them to increase their giving to missions, from $1000 per year to $1000 per day in 1971.
This great missionary vision never blinded them to the needs of their immediate neighborhood and of their own flock. In 1948 they began to have annual family camp meetings in rented properties. These camps brought so much blessing that in 1955 they joined with another Pentecostal Church and purchased their own camp in the mountains at Big Bear. Today SA-HA-LE CAMP is used by many other churches and is known as one of the best equipped in the area.
A CHRISTIAN DAY SCHOOL
“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. Pr. 22:6.
In September 1949 Maple Chapel commenced with their Day School using their Sunday School facilities as class rooms. In 1952 they were able to purchase a new property for the growing Kahnack Academy. When they moved to Glendale Avenue in 1964 the school became known as The Glendale Christian School and now takes care of nearly 200 children, including the preschool Day Care Department. It is just wonderful to see all the class rooms packed with children every Sunday morning. BUT with all that there are still millions within a few miles that go to no church. What about them?
A CHRISTIAN RADIO STATION
In the early fifties the pastor approached the Board with a vision of a radio station owned and operated by the church The good
brethren almost cried out in
Grounds...and a clear NEED FOR A LARGER CHURCH BUILDING.
They cannot afford a radio station. BUT GOD...called upon the pastor to call the people to prayer and to make no financial drive. In the meantime he scouted around to see if he could find a radio station on the market. He discovered equipment that was for sale at a give-away price. When he called the church to
“prayer” and said he would accept no money from any member, there were two visiting ladies in the audience. Since they were not members they COULD GIVE. Before the meeting closed they gave the full amount for the purchase of the equipment. How could any one object now? God had provided. Now they had equipment, but no experience, no license and no capital...BUT GOD. Soon it became evident to all that God was taking care of the whole matter. He performed one miracle after another to overcome all obstacles.
KINGS HERALD OF FAITH
They decided to adopt K-H-0-F as the call letters for the FM-Radio Station. They needed a high point on which to place the tower for the antenna. They found a hill-top that was free and asked the owner to sell them 5 acres. He adamantly refused and they were compelled to buy the entire hill, on a long term basis. BUT GOD knows the end from the beginning and later it turned out that this was HIS plan to take care of the future needs. At this time Maple Chapel had to rent larger auditoriums for weekend services. They had to rent offices
and studios for KHOF-FM which had been broadcasting from November 1956, with 16,500 Watts power. In 1958 this was increased to 100,000 Watts, yet the operation was not yet publicized to reach the full potential audience.
POOR PUBLICITY....BUT GOD
Suddenly one morning pastor and people and friends were astonished to find KHOF-FM mentioned in the headlines of the press, announced by radio reporters and shown by television newscasts God was using the folly of a man to promote HIS radio station. A complete stranger to any one in Maple Chapel had climbed to the top of the tower on top of the hill during the night. He declared that he would stay there until he obtained what he wanted from society. It had nothing to do with Maple Chapel. He sat there for 12 hours and his feat was publicized by all news-media. A week later he repeated this act and thus created even more advertising - free. Now KHOF-FM is on the air 24 hours a day and its outreach is phenomenal. It has become the largest commercial FM-Station in Southern California with a potential audience of over 12 million people. The need for a larger church auditorium, more school rooms, radio studios and office space had become an absolute essential for the growing church.
A VERY STRATEGIC SPOT
I was with the pastor one day when we were going on one of our many scouting trips to look for a suitable premises for all the needs of their very active congregation. We spotted a ‘For Sale’ sign on the lawn of a beautiful modern three storey building with lots of parking space in the rear. The place was just perfectly situated between the North-South and East-West Freeways. In a few moments people from every direction could reach this place. Pastor Ray Schoch phoned the owners. He was the very first enquirer and so he was
promised time to work out a plan. The price seemed prohibitive. BUT GOD had already made provision. When they placed all the land they owned, Maple Church, the School and the major part of the hill on which the FM-tower stood, they found it would cover the almost half-a-million dollars needed. Indeed that mountain which they did not need a few years ago had become the solution to this problem. On August 5, 1964 the local newspaper announced: “The Modern three-storey building on 71,000 square feet of land on the northwest corner of South Glendale Avenue and Eulalia Street has been acquired from Forest Lawn Memorial Park by Maple Chapel, and will be developed for one of the city’s largest church plants”.
AN ALL-COLOR TELEVISION STATION
Culminating six years of preparation, this non-profit picture air-lane was erected to follow the pattern of its sister radio station KHOF-FM. The transmitter with a power output of 1.25-million watts has its tower 5,000 feet above Los Angeles Valley. It could reach more than 10-million people from San Diego to San Fernando Valley.
This is the first single-church- owned television station in the U.S.A. according to the FCC. KHOF-TV, Channel 30, with an original investment of over $500,000 raised solely by the 25 year old church complex, with a congregation of about 600, is now broadcasting daily from 3 PM to 10 PM Studios for the 24-hour licensed TV station are located in FAITH CENTER. This one-million-dollar TV station began broadcasting on October 12, 1969 from its transmitter on Sunset Ridge. It would not be possible to tell all the miracles that God performed to bring all this into operation. However, judging by human statistics we may say that the commercial value of all this has increased from Maple Chapel’s original $12,000 to FAITH CENTER’S $6,000,000. That is 500 times in 25 years. IMPOSSIBLE?...BUT GOD.
FAITH CENTER GLOBAL MINISTRIES
When “Maple Chapel Assembly” moved from Maple Avenue to 1615 South Glendale Avenue where all operations are now centered, it was clear that they should have a ‘new name’. “FAITH” was the key to every operation. Missions...Schools, Radio...Television...Camp Meetings Pastoral Ministry all came out of this one center. Therefore, the only honest and truthful way to describe it was “FAITH CENTER”.
From this center the outreach with the Gospel has become
Immediately one floor was used as a sanctuary, the other for the School and one for offices and studios for KHOF-FM and TV. Soon public interest brought such crowds that the place was again too small. The brethren proceeded with building a large two storey auditorium next to the three storey building. December 4 1966 the new church building seating over 1,000 was dedicated. In the midst of all this the pastor and people were busy working towards the fulfillment of another vision. KHOF-FM Radio Station had become a spiritual and economic success and now they were seeking to strengthen this work by:
GLOBAL. Mexico has its first Christian Radio Station because FAITH CENTER joined with Christians in Mexico City to acquire XHMM-FM, now broadcasting 15 hours daily to a potential audience of more than 6-million souls.
By making the down-payment possible, they have an interest in a three-station outlet in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, which reaches a potential audience of almost four million, besides those people in Portugal that are reached by shortwave beam to Europe.
During 1971 radio station KIFM in Bakersfield, California, with a power output of 39,000 Watts, became an outright ‘gift’ to FAITH CENTER.
which was donated to them by RKO GENERAL Inc. and is valued at over $2,000,000. As I am writing this report, I have just had a telephone call from Pastor Ray Schoch to confirm the fact that the FCC has granted final approval of this TV-Station in New England being transferred to be operated by Faith Center Ministries. This means that when we celebrate the 25th Anniversary during May 1972 the charter members will be able to rejoice that the Lord had actually increased the commercial value of their operations from twelve thousand dollars in 1947 to TWELVE MILLION DOLLARS in 1972.
With this one mighty thrust of His purpose the Lord increased the potential listening audience by almost one million, in making possible this $175,000 gift which up to this time was the largest single ‘gift’ in the history of this church. They can now blanket over 600 cities with the Gospel Message.
AN AMAZING ANNIVERSARY GIFT
To crown all His miracles of 25 years, (1947 to 1972) it now seems the Lord has purposed to surprise the congregation and the world with another seemingly IMPOSSIBLE GIFT of a powerful color TV-Station, WHCT (Channel 18) in Hartford, Connecticut,
This article appeared in World Pentecost magazine, 1972, No. 4, pg. 20, 21, 28
Website owner’s comment: David du Plessis, also known as “Mr. Pentecost”, is considered one of the main founders of the charismatic movement, in which the Pentecostal experience of baptism with the Holy Spirit spread to non-Pentecostal churches worldwide. He was a frequent visitor to Faith Center.