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History of MBCSFV

Genesis of MBCSFV | Early Years of MBCSFV | Establishment of Our Church | Building of Golden Lampstand


Genesis of MBCSFV


Passing on a vision
Around 1976, Pastor Y.K. Chang - who founded MBCLA - started communicating with some of the brothers and sisters in the San Fernando Valley area about his "five churches" vision. This was a vision that was bestowed by God, and involved planting 5 additional churches. At that time, he had already planted one church in the West Side, and the northern region of the San Fernando Valley was his second target. After one Sunday service, in reply to God's calling, he gathered together those brothers and sisters who had pledged to work in the planting of this new church. To formalize their dedication to this calling, they all acted on their commitment by signing their names in a book.

Raising the Co-laborers
Without wasting any time, the brothers and sisters took their first step in the planting of a church in the San Fernando Valley area. At that time, a brother named David Wang, who had a hamburger store at the intersection of Venture and Hayvenhurst, heard about the news of God's ministry in the Chinese community in the valley. Burdened by the need, he promptly volunteered his own store as a gathering place for the newly formed fellowship. Those who made pledges to help in the formation of the new church started periodic weekday fellowship. Every time they came together, either Pastor Peter Chung or Dr. Cherry Chang, along with a few other elder brothers and sisters, would make a point to journey into the valley and join them in their fellowship. The brothers and sisters were greatly encouraged by the active participation of the elders from MBCLA, and their numbers grew. God's grace was clearly manifested among them. Gradually, a few leaders emerged. With the blessing of the Lord, a few remained in their post until the official formation of the church. Among them are deacon Paul Young, brother Gean-Tai Shen, sister Yvette Yeo Hong, brother Peter Yao, brother Arnold Sun, brother Raymond Yueh, and brother John Hsiao. Brother Raymond Yueh was the only newcomer at the time, but it was opportune, for God wanted to bring the fellowship to a new location. God's preparation was always just in time.

Family Participation
In March, 1976, through the invitation of a visiting Christian friend from Japan, brother Raymond Yueh walked into the MBCSFV. He was a seeker at the time, but through the convicting power of the Word, he turned his heart to God. One Sunday afternoon during lunch, sister Ester Wang brought him a cup of hot tea. Through this single act of loving care, he opened his heart and accepted Jesus Christ. After accepting Christ, brother Yueh started to participate in the weekday fellowship.


The difficulties of meeting in the hamburger store became apparent around September of 1976. As the summer reached its peak, with many people congregated in the crowded and steamy hamburger store, the heat became increasingly difficult to tolerate. Brother Yueh, although he was new in the faith, longed to participate in the ministry and opened his house as a place to worship. This helped to jump-start the family participation in the ministry. From that point onward, for a period of two and half years, the bimonthly meeting was held in brother Yueh's house. Under the leading of Pastor Peter Chung, there were teaching, prayers as well as learning to serve one another. Once the fellowship started entered into the family, the family members of the co-laborers also started to serve.


Gathering at Brother Yueh's home

The establishment of MBCSFV as a branch
In March, 1976, through the invitation of a visiting Christian friend from Japan, brother Raymond Yueh walked into the MBCSFV. He was a seeker at the time, but through the convicting power of the Word, he turned his heart to God. One Sunday afternoon during lunch, sister Ester Wang brought him a cup of hot tea. Through this single act of loving care, he opened his heart and accepted Jesus Christ. After accepting Christ, brother Yueh started to participate in the weekday fellowship.


The difficulties of meeting in the hamburger store became apparent around September of 1976. As the summer reached its peak, with many people congregated in the crowded and steamy hamburger store, the heat became increasingly difficult to tolerate. Brother Yueh, although he was new in the faith, longed to participate in the ministry and opened his house as a place to worship. This helped to jump-start the family participation in the ministry. From that point onward, for a period of two and half years, the bimonthly meeting was held in brother Yueh's house. Under the leading of Pastor Peter Chung, there were teaching, prayers as well as learning to serve one another. Once the fellowship started entered into the family, the family members of the co-laborers also started to serve.


17424 Sherman Way in Van Nuys

Harvesting and Wedding Bells
God worked through this branch to harvest the first crops in September 9, 1979 through a baptism that was held at MBCLA. In December 16th of the same year, another 5 members were received into God's kingdom. Among those who were baptized in those early days, Danny Woo, Jean Sun, and sister Liu are still faithfully serving before God.


Marriage of the brothers and sisters before God is always a joyful event. Brother Liu and sister Chen was the first couple married in the branch church. In the spring of 1980, brother Chi and sister Liu were also planning their wedding. Because their wedding guests were too numerous for the small congregation hall, they searched for a larger place of gathering. They came across First Baptist Church of Van Nuys (the predecessor to the Shepherd of the Hill) located at 14800 Sherman Way. They learned the Van Nuys church had a vacant chapel and was willing to rent it to our church. At that time, our church received a notice from the Southern Baptist Convention informing us of their intention to sell the property to another church. Although we were given the first right to purchase the property, it was not within our ability to do so at that time. In God's foresight, He had already made arrangements for another site for this church some ten years later. The third couple married in this church was Steven and Sandy Yang. Their union is still being remembered with a great deal of fondness today. They were the first couple to meet in this church, and they fell in love through their serving together. Through God's blessings, they became husband and wife.

Growing through the storm
Although the branch church was steadily growing through peace, there were inevitable growing pains. This branch church moved into the Van Nuys First Baptist Church's chapel on June 1st of 1980. All the necessary facilities and equipment, as well as their childcare facilities were made available to us for a token $50 per month offering. God provided us with an even better place of worship than before.


The branch church was into its second year when the church council was formed, with brother Arnold Sun as the first chairman. It seemed all areas of ministry were progressing under the grace of our Lord. However, Satan used the weakness of the flesh to attack this church with incredible intensity, so much so that the church was split in two. Those members who were left behind were deeply wounded and remorseful and asked God for His forgiveness. It made all of us walk even closer to God than ever before, relying on God for strength. In hindsight, we have to admit that our youthfulness and immaturity cost us dearly! But the grace of God was enough to cover all of our mistakes.

A new start
God used the rainbow to signify His everlasting covenant with His children, and He must strengthen the branches He planted. Satan's scheme was defeated, for the two churches after the split were both stabilized through God's shielding. Although the size of the congregation was temporarily cut in half, some time later, some departed congregation members returned to the church. In 1981, God sent His faithful servant Dr. Samuel Tang and Pastor David Liao to us to conduct service training. Pastor Liao in particular, preached to us twice a month from 1981 to 1982. He not only gave us the Word of God through the pulpit, but he also taught the councilors how to govern this church in accordance with biblical principles. Under the guidance of Pastor Liao, brother Arnold Sun drafted the church's covenant and bylaws. Thus, MBCSFV had laid its foundation.