Pastor Rick Warren Gives The Last Sermon At Saddleback Church

Pastor Rick Warren Gives The Last Sermon At Saddleback Church

On Sunday, August 28, Pastor Rick Warren began his final sermon at Saddleback Church with a well-known query. He questioned the crowded congregation at Saddleback’s main campus in Lake Forest and those listening online, “Have I told you lately that I love you?” Weekly worldwide attendance at Saddleback Church averages over 40,000 people.

Compared to the small crowd that attended his first sermon at the church on Easter in 1980, which was delivered at Laguna Hills High School, this one had a much larger audience.

But there were references to that first service and those in the decades that followed in his final sermon before he retired. The address he gave on Sunday was the same one he shared on his first day, and it was titled “The Beginning of a Miracle.”

Warren said Sunday, “In that first sermon, I was talking to strangers about a church that didn’t exist. Warren, 68, presided over the service from the same pulpit he had used for his inaugural sermon. Before settling into its Lake Forest headquarters, the church frequently relocated, using that pulpit in 79 different locations.

Warren stated in June 2021 that he intended to retire and return to his less “visible position as founding pastor.” Still, he also displayed that he and his wife, Kay, would continue to be active members of Saddleback Church as they grew older.

On June 2, Pastor Andy Wood was named as Warren’s replacement. Warren made a tearful appeal to the Saddleback congregation on Sunday, pleading with them to support Wood and his wife Stacie and pledge to help pass the church on to future generations.

The sermon on Sunday, the celebration of the Warrens’ time at Saddleback Church this weekend, and Wood’s subsequent installation will signal a significant change for the church, which started small but now has 14 locations in Southern California and reaches people all over the world.

The Warrens stated that after deciding on Saddleback Valley to launch the church in 1980, they committed to 40 years. In 2019, Warren said, “Kay and I made this crazy promise that we would devote 40 years to one place, that we wouldn’t move, and that we wouldn’t be tempted to attend another church.

Warren gave a sermon on Sunday that seemed to sum up his experience with Saddleback Church. He advised, “Start with the end in mind.” “Understand what God desires of you.”