[Press Release] Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church Baptizes 45,000th

Oct. 19, 2016
Saddleback Church announces landmark moment in its 36-year history.


Lake Forest, CA — On an ordinary Sunday, much like any other at Saddleback Church, home to lead pastor, Rick Warren, an extraordinary milestone was reached. Sunday marked the church’s 45,000th baptism of one Alberto Flores who was baptized alongside his 13-year-old son Andre reaching an unprecedented achievement in the church’s 36 years of ministry.


“This weekend is a historic weekend for our church,” Pastor Rick Warren told his congregation, “because somebody in this group is going to be the 45,000th baptism of Saddleback Church. And I’m going to take whoever that person is, out to lunch.” Warren added.  


By the end of the day, across all 16 campuses, Saddleback had recorded 45,743 baptisms in total, 792 of which were baptized this weekend alone.  Pastor Rick Warren personally baptized 600 of them.  


The news of Saddleback’s growth in baptisms comes as an encouragement after U.S. churches have experienced a decline in baptisms over recent years and as overall church attendance is down across the country.


“Baptisms are an amazing moment in the life of the church,” says Warren. “They are a public sign of new life in the believer, of new beginnings for all those involved, and they encourage everyone watching to renew their own commitment to Christ. We are grateful that God has graciously allowed us to be a part of more than 45 thousand people taking this amazing step and we pray that we’ll get to be a part of many many more in the coming months and years.”


Note: Photos are available here.