Set Free Church
Set Free Baptist Church (soon renamed Set Free Christian Fellowship) was founded in 1982 by Pastor Phil Aguilar with a passion to reach the down and out, black sheep, drug addicts, and bikers. After meeting in homes, pizza parlors, and other small venues, the fledgling group of 35 people found a small facility to start meeting in.
Through a growing relationship with Anaheim Mayor Don Roth, Set Free was able to rent abandoned homes in the city in order to start discipleship homes for people in need of drug rehabilitation and a fresh start. Starting with five homes, Set Free began taking in 50 people in need of assistance.
After renting a large warehouse in Anaheim, Set Free began attracting many more people through church services, food ministry, motorcycle ministry, and anything else to help the community. The facility became a 24-7 venue to connect with people and meet their needs. As Pastor Phil had the opportunity to appear on TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network) and develop his own show, thousands of people flocked to Set Free services.
By the early 90’s, accusations and negative press swirled around the ministry, which led to the city of Anaheim seeking the removal of Set Free from its meeting location. Over 6,000 people attended the final service in April 0f 1993, and Pastor Phil and a crew of leaders hit the road to minister around the nation.
Inspired by the original Set Free in Anaheim, churches were planted throughout the United States and even the globe.