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Our History

The Story of Calvary

Calvary Community Church began in 1976 as a small group of Christ-followers under the leadership of our founding Pastor Larry DeWitt.  That small but dedicated group of men and women began meeting weekly at a local restaurant called the Hungry Tiger and immediately the Lord began to bless their efforts.  Hundreds began to come to hear the Gospel, learn from the Bible, and be encouraged by God’s people at Calvary.  Soon the church began to outgrow the restaurant space and began to look for a new home.  It was at that time an industrial space in Westlake Village became available and we moved worship locations to what is affectionately known as The Warehouse, just a short distance away from our present facility.  

Once in the Warehouse, we continued to grow numerically and spiritually as it began to make an impact on the lives of the people living in the Conejo Valley.  Once again faced with the tension of growing numbers and limited facilities, we searched for a new location to gather together.  In 1999, our church was able to relocate from The Warehouse to a new, larger facility that would help enhance our ministry capacity.  So, on Palm Sunday, 1999, the whole church marched down the road from one location to the other and began ministry in our present location in Westlake Village.  

Throughout our history, Calvary has had three senior pastors.  The position is currently held by Pastor Shawn Thornton, who has been at Calvary since 2008.  Under his leadership, Calvary has grown numerically, deepened spiritually, and has expanded its local and global outreach.  As the primary teacher of God’s Word from the pulpit, he has continued Calvary’s legacy of teaching Biblical truth in a relevant and practical way to God’s people.  

Today Calvary has a multitude of ministries on campus, in the community and all around the world.  With strong children, students and young adult ministries we have made a commitment to the next generation. Throughout the week you can find small groups, Bible studies, classes, support groups, and pastoral care on campus. For the community, there are ministries that focus on feeding the hungry, sheltering those in need, providing clothes, and assisting those in crisis.  Around the world, Calvary has over 60 missions partners who share the Good News of Jesus with the nations.  

Calvary has a wonderful history and we celebrate God’s faithful hand over our church.  We hope you can join us as we continue to participate in the story God is writing in and through our church!