Mishawaka, Indiana. Named after an Indian princess with a legendary history (you can look it up), and once known as the peppermint capital of the world, this mid-western town cradled the childhood and teen years of future pastor and radio teacher, Shawn Thornton. Though his childhood was not always ideal, his Christian home and Bible-teaching church provided the foundation for developing a life-long goal to “live and love like Jesus.”
He received Christ in middle school and in his early teen years stood before the congregation to announce his availability for Christian ministry.
From conducting children’s bible classes, to anchoring his high school debate team, to working summers at Christian camps, God was preparing him for future pastoral and teaching roles.
At Bible College in West Virginia and Seminary in Washington DC, people around Shawn saw something special and believed God was going to use him in meaningful ways to advance the Kingdom.
His first full-time ministry was as an associate pastor in a church near Philadelphia, PA. He then was offered an opportunity to serve as a member of the faculty and administration of Appalachian Bible College, his undergraduate alma mater.
At the age of 30 he was invited to become the Senior Pastor of Bible Center Church in Charleston, WV—a high profile congregation in the state capital. Since 2008 he has served as Senior Pastor of Calvary Community Church in Westlake Village, CA—which now sees an attendance of about 4,000 people each Sunday and minsters effectively to the community, the state, and beyond.
God has brought together in Shawn, as in all of us, a unique combination of childhood foundations, formative transitions, educational experiences, and adult opportunities. We now see this preparation in full bloom as Shawn continues to serve and work daily to “live and love like Jesus.”