RCA Church of Ridgecrest will be breaking ground for a new 500-seat auditorium on Sunday, March 17. Service starts at 10 a.m. with the groundbreaking ceremony, free lunch and fun family activities to follow.

Todd Black, Lead Pastor of RCA Church announced during the church services on Feb. 10 that the church board and general contractor, Rich Merati, are ready to proceed with the project, which has been in the planning stages since September 2017 when a building fund campaign was launched to fund the initiative.

In 1947, the first congregation met in Inyokern under the name of Calvary Assembly of God in a rectangular tent patterned after the wilderness tabernacle in the Old Testament. The church eventually built a sanctuary that has since been converted into a house in Inyokern. In 1950 the church purchased a property on Panamint Street in Ridgecrest and initiated the first Ridgecrest building project in 1952. It held its first service on site in 1955, merging the Ridgecrest and Inyokern congregations at the Panamint Street site.

In 1960, the church began to plan for future growth by purchasing a seven-acre lot on what is today the northeast corner of Downs Street and Upjohn Avenue. In 1979, a building campaign commenced on that new site with construction starting in 1981 for what is currently the site of RCA Church.

The first service was held on New Year’s Day in 1984. The old Panamint Street property now houses Victory Baptist Church.

Pastor Chuck Hobson held the position of Senior Pastor for Calvary Assembly for 28 years, retiring in 2010.

In 2012, the church changed its name to RCA Church, holding a congregation of 180 members with 325 in attendance on Easter of that year. Pastor Billy Phipps launched the first RCA Easter Egg hunt that same year, which had an attendance of more than seven hundred community residents.

In April 2014, the current pastor, Todd Black, became the pastor and was officially installed as the Lead Pastor in January 2015. Under his leadership the church grew in 2016 to over 500 in attendance on Sunday morning and over 1,000 in attendance for Easter Service at Kerr McGee Center, prompting discussions of the need to build a new auditorium. That same year Christmas Eve services held over 800 people.

In September 2017, the board of RCA Church launched a master plan for the current seven-acre site with a building campaign called, “Daring Faith, Building Today for Lives Tomorrow.” The first step of that plan is the 500-seat auditorium that the congregation will break ground for on Sunday. The new auditorium will also hold a convention-style lobby that will allow for seating for 300 for dinners and banquets.

For further information about RCA Church contact Jaqui Williams at office@rcachurch.com, or call (760) 375-5014.