Celebrate Recovery - How Celebrate Recovery Started
How Celebrate Recovery Started
Celebrate Recovery started in 1991 at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California. At that time, the church was meeting in a high school gymnasium. After John Baker was unable to share openly about Jesus Christ in his secular recovery meetings and was uncomfortable sharing about his struggle with alcohol in his men's Bible study, John wrote Pastor Rick Warren the now famous concise 13-page single space letter outlining the vision God had given him for Celebrate Recovery. Pastor Rick said, "Great John, do it."
The first night 45 people showed up and Celebrate Recovery was born. With only four groups, men's and women's chemical dependency and men's and women's codependency, the ministry has grown from those four groups to the twenty open share groups they have today at Saddleback. Thousands of people have gone through the workbooks and are now serving in CR and the church. Celebrate Recovery has become the number one outreach at Saddleback Church, with over 70% of its members coming from outside the church. There are now over 3500 churches who have active Celebrate Recovery programs meeting in them.
The first ten years were the birth stage of Celebrate Recovery and now God is calling us to take it to the World. There are now thousands of groups around the world and growing. We are part of a movement that is bringing the hurting and broken in the Church to the healing power of Jesus Christ.