Life Pacific College is a place where people discover their calling. We have a rich tradition of preparing leaders for a lifetime of ministry and leadership in the Church, the workplace, and the world.
Though it began as a two-year institute, today Life Pacific College is a four-year regionally and nationally accredited Bible college affiliated with The Foursquare Church and committed to an enduring Pentecostal mission. For more than 90 years, LPC has offered high quality Christian education for learners who desire life-long learning and equipping that is centered in the Word of God and empowered by the life-giving testimony of Jesus Christ. This message dates back to the founding of the college:
“The purpose of the Institute is two-fold: the preparation of Evangelists and Missionaries for the field; and a thorough Bible instruction for those not expecting to enter the field, but desiring knowledge of the Word of God. Its purpose is to fit men and women to be practical winners of souls, able to cope with the most difficult situations and to come out more than conquerors by the power of the Holy Spirit; to give a thorough understanding of the Foursquare Gospel and the knowledge of how to impart it to others.” (Aimee Semple McPherson, 1926 Carry On Annual, p. 18).
Life Pacific College’s (LPC) historic and continuing mission is the preparation and education of leaders entering ministry, including pastoral, missional, bi-vocational, non-traditional, and marketplace ministry. Our sponsoring denomination, The Foursquare Church, has experienced remarkable worldwide growth through its existence, with LPC playing an important role in its development. There are now about 8.5 million Foursquare members in 147 countries, meeting in 64,000 churches. As a contemporary and progressive Bible college, LPC supports the education and development of men and women in the Body of Christ in the church and marketplace. The college seeks to improve the provision of workers/graduates to ministry fields relevant to the 21st century church, through programs in areas of transformational and pastoral ministry, strategic leadership, biblical studies, worship arts & media, human development & psychology, business administration (business as mission), and general studies. Additionally, the college partners with LPC-Ignite in Virginia, offering a discipleship-immersion program culminating in LPC’s A.A. in General Studies degree.
The roots of Life Pacific College are undeniably intertwined with the founding of Angelus Temple and the beginnings of The Foursquare Church. In 1921, famed evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson traveled cross-country to southern California by automobile and established a large, vibrant and fast-growing evangelistic center in Los Angeles. Mrs. McPherson and the congregation’s leaders soon realized the need for permanent facilities, and consequently Angelus Temple, The Foursquare Church’s first place of assembly, opened in Los Angeles on January 1, 1923. Just five weeks later, about one hundred ministerial students enrolled in classes at the Echo Park Evangelistic and Missionary Training Institute. The institute’s enrollment quickly grew, with plans laid to construct a new education facility. In 1926 the institute moved to the newly constructed five-story complex next door to Angelus Temple. Following a short period operating as the International Institute of Foursquare Evangelism (IIFE), the institution was renamed L.I.F.E. (Lighthouse of International Foursquare Evangelism) to better represent its overarching objectives. L.I.F.E. was quickly transitioning to college status and graduated its first class in April 1925.
Establishing “Carry On!” as its slogan and yearbook name, the college positioned itself to better serve the now-stabilizing Foursquare congregations of the 1930s by expanding to a three-year diploma program. In the 1940s, the college added a four-year program, culminating in the development of the Bachelor of Theology and Bachelor of Religious Education degree programs in the 1950s. For several years in the late 40s and early 50s the college offered a fifth-year Doctor of Theology program. Traveling music and choral groups had been in place almost since L.I.F.E. was founded in 1950 intercollegiate sports—including basketball and baseball—commenced. The Bachelor of Arts degree program replaced the Bachelor of Theology (considered at the time to be a five-year program) in the 1960s.
In the 70s, L.I.F.E. began to consider the need to relocate. After receiving a multi-million-dollar gift earmarked for moving the campus, the college investigated a number of sites in Southern California, finally settling on a property in San Dimas, CA. Construction began in 1989, with the new campus location opening in 1990. Further development of the campus since 1990 includes the addition of three more residence halls and extensive landscaping. The Roy Hicks, Jr. student center and Ronald Mehl Court gymnasium opened in 2003.
History of our Leaders
Founder Aimee Semple McPherson served as the first president. McPherson opened the Institute for International Foursquare Evangelism in 1923 desiring to prepare men and women for the church’s growing need for missionaries, evangelists, as well as others who might be “not expecting to enter the field” but desired a strong education in the Bible.
Upon her death, Aimee’s son Rolf K. McPherson succeeded to the presidency in 1944, serving as the 2nd president for nearly 30 years, the longest presidential tenure at L.I.F.E., (serving concurrently as president of the church, as did his mother). Several “deans of the college” provided day-to-day leadership through the years, including Dr. William Black as the first dean of L.I.F.E. in its early years. Rev. Harriet Jordan served capably as college dean until 1937, she was succeeded by noted Foursquare pastor Watson B. Teaford. When Teaford assumed the pastorate of Angelus Temple, Dr. Clarence E. Hall, then chief executive of Foursquare’s Canadian Bible college, was appointed and served for twenty years.
In 1973, the college began the transition to an on-site chief executive officer. Dr. Donald McGregor was appointed as L.I.F.E.’s first and only executive director. In 1976, longtime Foursquare scholar and historian Dr. Nathaniel M. Van Cleave was inaugurated as the college’s third president, with Dr. Rolf K. McPherson continuing in office as president of the Board of Trustees. Prominent pastor and author Jack W. Hayford, an alumnus and long-time supporter of the college, served as the fourth president (1977- 1982), during this time L.I.F.E. achieved ABHE (AABC) accreditation (1980). He was succeeded by fifth president Dr. Jack E. Hamilton (1982–1992), who at the time was president of the L.I.F.E. Alumni Association and a Foursquare senior pastor in Santa Maria, California. Under Dr. Hamilton’s able leadership, the college relocated to its present campus in San Dimas, California.
In 1992, following Dr. Hamilton, well-known pastor and author Ron Mehl served as sixth president of L.I.F.E. At that time, Dr. Dick Scott assumed the day-to-day operations role of executive vice president, then was inaugurated as LPC’s seventh president in 1994. Scott’s wide-ranging background and experience as a minister, linguist, missionary and administrator enabled his proficient leadership at the college. His interest and knowledge in computer technology and building improvements, led to the most sweeping changes in the college’s history since the construction of the original campus. During his presidency, the college pursued regional accreditation with WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges). With a new location, new dorms, leadership and accreditation, it seemed only fitting to change the name of the college. It was then, that L.I.F.E. Bible College became Life Pacific College.
Following Dick Scott’s departure in 2003, a presidential search was conducted culminating in the inauguration of Dr. Dan Stewart as eighth president. During Dr. Stewart’s able leadership, the college became debt free. In 2008, Dr. Stewart became a full time pastor, leaving a brief vacancy in the president’s office at LPC. During the selection process, Dr. Robert Flores began to serve the college in an interim capacity. November 2008 marked the conclusion of that interim status as the board confirmed Dr. Flores as the ninth president of Life Pacific College. Dr. Flores’ tenure was marked by renewed emphasis on developing and maintaining relationships with the pastors, churches, and leaders within the Foursquare denomination as well as with other denominations. Dr. Robert Flores resigned in December 2012 to re-enter pastoral ministry and Dr. Jim J. Adams was appointed as Interim President.
An alumnus of Life Pacific College (class of ’77), Adams earned the Doctorate of Education in Higher Education Leadership from the University of Southern California. A Foursquare minister since 1977, he served as the youth director for the Western District of Foursquare Churches, and was a familiar presence at Foursquare camps. Jim has also served as Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, and Dean of Students at Life Pacific College, Superintendent and Chief Executive Officer for Western Christian Schools, and Professor and Program Director of Operation Impact at Azusa Pacific University.
Furthermore, he is known for his exceptional collaborative leadership and personal qualities serving in his previous role as Executive Director for the Center of Global Learning & Engagement at Azusa Pacific University. He has published numerous articles on topics related to higher education and taught organizational management, research, ministry, and leadership. Following a national search Dr. Adams was elected by the trustees as the tenth President of LPC, and assumed office on July 1, 2013, with inauguration ceremonies on October 18, 2013. He holds a passion for ministry, embodies the spirit of our Foursquare family and is uniquely qualified to engage the educational opportunities that lie before us.
Mission, Vision, & Values
Life Pacific College is an institution of biblical higher education existing for the transformational development of students into leaders prepared to serve God in the Church, the workplace, and the world.
Life Pacific College will be recognized worldwide as a premier pentecostal institution, within the Foursquare tradition, characterized by a diverse community of Spirit-empowered students, scholars, and practitioners whose hearts and minds are devoted to Christ and His Kingdom.
- Scripture as our authoritative guide for faith and practice and the foundation for how we think, learn, live, and minister. (2 Tim. 3:16)
- Grace-based community exemplified by excellence organizationally, and Christ-like character individually. (Eph. 2:11-22; John 15; Romans 8:28-30; Gal. 5:22-25/Eph. 5:15-20)
- Foursquare heritage and its appeal for moderation in doctrine and practice, a Spirit-empowered lifestyle, and an interdenominational mission to take the Gospel to the ends of the earth. (Titus 1:7-9; Eph. 4:11-13, Acts 1:4-8)
- Global awareness displayed through valuing diversity, understanding our place in the world, the far-reaching impact of decisions and actions, and innovatively engaging the world (I Cor. 12:12-31; Matt 28:19-20; John 17:15-19)
We believe in biblical truth and affirm the supremacy of Christ in all areas of life. These beliefs exist at the core of who we are.
The Foursquare Declaration of Faith
The Holy Scriptures
We believe the Bible is God-inspired (2 Timothy 3:16,17).
The Eternal Godhead
We believe God is Triune: Father, Son and Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 13:14).
The Creation of Humankind & Sanctity of Life
We believe God created humankind male and female (Genesis 1:27; 2:18-22). We believe that God established marriage between male and female (Genesis 2:23-25). We believe in the sanctity of life and the God-given right of each person to live out his or her full life from conception to natural death (Psalm 139:13-14).
The Fall Of Humankind
We believe that humankind was created in the image of God, but that by voluntary disobedience fell from perfection (Romans 5:12).
The Plan of Salvation
We believe that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us, signing the pardon of all who believe on Him (John 3:16; Romans 5:8).
Salvation Through Grace
We believe that we have no righteousness and must come to God pleading the righteousness of Christ (Ephesians 2:8).
Repentance and Acceptance
We believe that upon sincere repentance, and a whole-hearted acceptance of Christ, we are justified before God (I John 1:9).
The New Birth
We believe that the change which takes place in the heart and life at conversion is a very real one (2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 2:20).
Daily Christian Living
We believe that it is the will of God that we be sanctified daily, growing constantly in the faith (Hebrews 6:1)
Water Baptism & The Lord’s Supper
We believe that baptism by immersion is an outward sign of an inward work (Matt. 28:19). We believe in the commemoration of the Lord’s Supper by the symbolic use of the bread and juice of the vine (I Corinthians 11:24, 25).
Baptism With the Holy Spirit
We believe that the Baptism with the Holy Spirit is to endue the believer with power; and that His incoming is after the same manner as in Bible days (Acts 2:4).
The Spirit-Filled Life
We believe that it is the will of God that we walk in the Spirit daily (Ephesians 4:30–32).
The Gifts and Fruit of the Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit has gifts to bestow upon the Christian; and that we should show spiritual fruit as evidence of a Spirit-filled life (I Corinthians 12:1–11; Galatians 5:22).
We believe that the experience and daily walk of the believer should never lead him into extremes of fanaticism (Philippians 4:5).
We believe that divine healing is the power of Christ to heal the physically sick in answer to the prayer of faith (James 5:14–16).
The Second Coming of Christ
We believe that the second coming of Christ is personal and imminent (I Thessalonians 4:16, 17).
We believe it is our sacred duty to identify ourselves with the visible Body of Christ (Acts 16:5; Hebrews 10:25).
We believe that rulers should be upheld at all times except in things opposed to the will of God (Romans 13:1–5).
The Final Judgment
We believe that all shall stand some day before the judgment seat of God, and there receive eternal life or death (2 Corinthians 5:10).
We believe that Heaven is the glorious eternal home of born-again believers (John 14:1–3; Revelation 7:15–17).
We believe that hell is the place of eternal torment for all who reject Christ as the Savior (Revelation 20:10,15).
We believe that soul winning is the most important responsibility of the Church (James 5:20).
Tithes and Offerings
We believe that the method ordained of God for the support and spread of His cause is by giving of tithes and free-will offerings (Malachi 3:10; 2 Corinthians 9:7).