41 Years After, Author and Preacher, Rick Warren, Set to Retire


The lead pastor of Saddleback Church, Rick Warren has announced plans to retire soonest. He made this announcement in his church on Sunday, June 6, stating that he is in search of a successor after being on the pulpit for 41 years.

The church, which was founded by Warren in 1980, is the second biggest church in the Southern Baptist Convention. Also, it is the largest Protestant denomination in the United States. 

Christian Headlines covered the moment the preacher talked about his plans to retire during the church’s online service. Warren noted that it’s a big deal for him to make such a decision. This is due to the fact he has been the only lead pastor of the church since it was founded.

Furthermore, Warren said that for the past 42 years, he and his wife, Kay, had envisaged the day they would retire. And they have been waiting for God’s perfect timing.

The renowned preacher is well known for his bestselling devotional book, ‘’The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?’’. It was first published in 2002. With over 50 million copies sold, it went on to become of the top-selling nonfiction book of all time. 

The popularity of this book made Warren to state that he would give out 90% of his income as tithe instead of the biblical 10%.

Warren is among the revered clerics in the country and due to his evangelical spirit and fame; he has been compared to Billy Graham. He is also known as a leading expert in topics of church development. 

Likewise, Time Magazine once named him as one of the ‘’100 Most Influential People in the World.’’ Meanwhile, Newsweek has equally named him as one of the ‘’15 People Who Make America Great.’’

While speaking on his retirement, Warren noted that the time of his retirement was only a promise he made to the church at age 26, in their first service that he would spend his next 40 years, serving the church. He noted that it wasn’t what God told him but the time he set for himself. This was to enable him to take note of his duration in the church. 

In addition, he said that he does not have a particular person in mind to take over from him. However, he will be looking both inward and outside the church for a possible successor. A time schedule for this search was not stated and the elders will make the final decision.

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