Our History

The Bible Tabernacle was founded March 8, 1959 by Pastor Fred H. Hilst and Patricia Hilst. Our ministry was founded to “seek and to save that which was lost” and to minister to the needs of the poor and needy. The early days of our ministry saw our founders ministering along the boardwalk of Venice Beach. They even operated a coffee shop in this area to give comfort and the Word of God to all who came in. The ministry used the Old City Hall on 17th Avenue by the beach for three years and then the American Legion hall along Venice Way for another three years. The Legionnaires built their new Legion Hall on Main Street and we used this for another three years until empty land was found on Washington Way for the erection of our own church.

By faith and much donated material and labor the present church was completed and dedicated in March of 1971. Outreach to the poor and needy of the community, in the way of food, clothing and household items was from the beginning of our ministry. We started serving Christmas dinners in 1962 and Thanksgiving dinners in 1985. The tremendous ministry of housing the needy was never imagined as it grew from a few to a multitude. Our prayers for more property to meet the need of our overflowing population were eventually met. A businessman who attended our services was greatly moved by men whose lives were being changed by the power of God’s word. So, he along with two of his business partners purchased property in Canyon Country and donated it to the ministry. This property was dedicated to men only, thus, the beginning of the Bible Tabernacle, New Life Institute: dedicated to the Glory of God. The first men were sent to this location on February 15, 1979. We continue “serving the master by serving man.” Serving and housing 150 to 200 men and women as well as countless clothing and food donations distributed to the needy daily.

Our Founder Reverend Fred Hilst