In 1948, the San Diego Director of Missions was concerned there wasn't a Southern Baptist Church in North County, which could reach military personnel from the South. He placed flyers on every car with a southern license plate and placed an ad in the paper encouraging any “Oakie, Arkie or Texan” missing home to visit his Bible study. The gathering was affectionately called "the Home Church", which met weekly in Oddfellows Hall on Mission and Hill Street.
Church Growth Through the Decades
Service Memorial Southern Baptist was officially granted its status on October 26th, 1951. That same year, the first sanctuary, now called "Heritage Hall," was completed on the East side of our campus. By 1964, the church needed a bigger meeting space as God greatly increased their numbers. Within a year, they built our current sanctuary on the West side of campus. In 1972 an education wing was added, bridging the two buildings.
Recent History (2000's)
Over the years, the church was dynamic and thriving until it began to decline and age out. The church had failed to appropriately adjust and reach a changing city and neighborhood with the Gospel. By the early 2000’s, the congregation consisted of only a small group of committed believers over the age of 55. This committed core recognized some missed opportunities but chose to pray and act in faith to where God was leading them.
Pastor Ben Ferrell led them in faith to prepare for what God would do next. During this time, Pastor Ben met Shawn Beaty, the pastor of the young church plant, North Hills Church. North Hills was largely made up of college aged members & young adults, looking for a building to call home. After a year of praying and planning, the two churches merged with a formal ceremony in 2006. Service Memorial Southern Baptist and North Hills Church became a unified body of Christ-followers called "Generation Church" as we are still called today.
Current and Future Hope
Since Pastor Shawn transitioned out the church’s leadership has changed hands a few times. God has been the faithful constant, continuing the legacy that He began here in 1948. We’re proud to continue carrying the torch of the gospel, reaching the unreached, serving the underserved, and forming lives around God’s grace. We are committed to church planting, church revitalization and the raising up of gospel centered leaders. We are all learning to be more like Jesus and live out the Gospel as the church in the everyday stuff of life. Learn more about what we believe HERE.