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Thursday, April 21, 2016

Joe Dallas Was assistant Pastor and a Piano Player In The Original, Brant Baker, Shekinah Fellowship Of Long Beach California

Joe DallasDallas left the Metropolitan Church behind and, like the prodigal returning to his father’s house – made his way back to Calvary Chapel in Costa Mesa.

He moved from his apartment, found a new job, and started seeing a Christian counselor he found in the yellow pages.

 “It was important for me to change everything,” he says.

Between his renewed fellowship in a Bible-based church, his time spent in the scriptures, and his Christian counselor, Dallas was able to learn some important lessons.


Senior Pastor Brant Baker Shekinah Fellowship Of  Long Beach California

There are various accounts of Shekinah Fellowship floating around. 

Here is one account that I trust to be accurate, first because it was written by a member of the original ministry, Joe Dallas and second because it was written much closer to the actual events then anything that would have been written in more recent times.

The memory of what took place some thirty years later may not be as clear as the memory of someone young, an on site eyewitness, writing just a few short years after the events had taken place.

 Also this writing was approved by Pastor Brant Baker himself prior to publication in the Shekinah Magazine publication.
So here I present to you:

The "official" version of the history of Shekinah Fellowship of Long Beach California, as told in the spring of 1975 by assistant Pastor Joe Dallas who was under Pastor Brant Baker's watch at Shekinah Fellowship .

During the summer of 1971 the Jesus People Movement was at it's peak.

 Evangelism pulsated in every major southern California city. 

Churches were shocked, baffled or delighted to find hundreds of thousands of young people interested in attending worship services. 

Magazines were printing feature articles from various viewpoints of the phenomenal revival of Christianity among the youth.

As the Jesus People Movement increased, home Bible study groups began to spring up.

 Having forsaken old habits and acquaintances, many of the kids who had given their lives to Jesus found themselves friendless.

 There was a need for intimate fellowship coupled with the desire for thorough Biblical training. 

Informal meetings where believers could worship and learn the Word of God together became common.

One such group was meeting in Long Beach. 

Each of the Long Beach high schools had been exposed to the preaching of the Gospel through MARANATHA concert guest speakers during school assemblies, or personal witnessing from the students within the schools. 

Many students responded to the call of Christ.

Every conceivable type of background was represented- drug pushers, athletes, actors, cheerleaders, gang leaders, band leaders, boy chasers, homosexuals, doctor's sons, un-wed mothers, the "somebodies" and the "nobodies" from Long Beach gathered together in Jesus name.

Without fear of exaggeration it could have been described as a melting pot made up of every human circumstance and need. 

Backgrounds were generally forgotten and it was agreed that,"If any man be in Christ he is a new creation."\

 So on this basis, the concept of Christian fellowship was introduced and established.

Leading the group was twenty-three year old Brant Baker. 

Brant had forsaken a chaotic Hollywood existence after re-dedicating his life to Jesus.

Why certain men are chosen and others are not remains God's business. 

 However, a brief view of Brant's former way of living helps to understand his compassion for young people.

 Being the son of a wealthy business woman and of a father active in politics, Brant was well acquainted with the affluent society. 

He was raised with religious convictions but the lack of fundamental Biblical training left him without proper spiritual nourishment. 

He received Jesus Christ at the age of sixteen, while attending a Billy Graham Crusade in San Diego CA, but the relationship between him and his Lord never really progressed.

While still young, Brant accepted a job working for Desilu Studios in Hollywood. 

He was brought into regular contact with some of the top celebrities of that time and life, as Brant described it, seemed to consist of a series of parties and engagements that never stopped.

Tired of it all, he returned to his home in Newport Beach CA where he and his mother opened a men's clothing store on Seventeenth Street in Costa Mesa CA.

 During this time, a small church in Costa Mesa was beginning to experience an unusual growth in attendance. 

It was recommended to Brant and soon it became his regular church home.

 There he fervently studied to learn the Word of God.

This small church, Calvary Chapel, soon became not only Brant's church home, but also a place of regular worship for over three thousand young Christians.

Under the ministry of Pastor Chuck Smith, Brant became thoroughly versed in the basic teachings of the Bible.

 The teachings would later serve as a foundation for his own ministry.

Along with learning the scriptures, Brant was beginning to acquire a deep hunger to serve.

 His goal was to be used of God.

 It inspired him into a deeper study of the Word and the things of God.

Personal acquaintances with several of the leading ministers enabled Brant to be exposed to the workings of the ministry.

 The call to full time service became more apparent to him and his desire increased to respond to that call. 

An opportunity to teach a small group opened up at one of the churches in Long Beach.

At this time, Brant acquired a close friend and spiritual companion, Linda Torre.

 Together he and Linda drove from Costa Mesa to minister in Long Beach.

Things did not work out though.


 As more and more personal and financial problems developed, it was obvious that Brant was to wait a little longer. 

During this time of waiting he learned the meaning of the Lord's instruction to, "Let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me."

A most difficult trial arose when Brant's grandmother suffered a serious stroke and was hospitalized. 

Brant knew the shock and sense of personal loss both he and his family would suffer if she died.

 He began to pray for her healing.

Then one evening, while alone with her in the intensive care unit of the hospital, Brant laid his hands on her and began interceding. 

What he now describes as the Shekinah glory filled the room and his grandmother's miraculous healing began!

Her recovery is still a mystery to several of the attending doctors. 

An opportunity to teach in Long Beach again opened up, in the home of one of Brant's previous acquaintances.

Each Saturday evening a handful of teenagers gathered to hear Brant teach lengthy Bible studies.

 A time of worship followed and special prayer was made for those desiring healing or baptism in the Holy Spirit. 

Miraculous recoveries from a variety of illnesses became a common part of these meetings.

As the group expanded, new facilities were set up in a local church's Sunday School room. 

There, the name "Shekinah Fellowship" was conceived.

Emphasis had always been placed upon the presence of God at each gathering.

 So the name "Shekinah," the presence and glory of God seemed appropriate.

The growth continued and shortly another move was made to a larger church where Brant continued to minister for over a year. 

It was during this time that he was ordained by the State of California as a licensed minister of the Gospel, and Shekinah Fellowship was incorporated by the State as a recognized church organization.

Services were held Saturday night, Sunday afternoon, to avoid conflicts with other church services, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings

.Approximately two hundred young people were a regular part of Shekinah Fellowship, so it became necessary to appoint elders and deacons to assist Brant in the feeding of the flock.

As other young men began to take the responsibility of spiritual oversight, an amazing thing began to happen. 

Several of the "kids," who were regularly attending Shekinah, were now becoming involved as ministers. 

No one had attended a seminary or received a degree, yet somehow teenagers, who had previously known next to nothing about spiritual matters, were now vital instruments in the hands of God. 

Singers, musicians, evangelists, teachers, counselors and an infinite variety of personal ministries were being developed. 

This has been the case ever since.

The attendance on Saturday evenings had increased until Shekinah had again outgrown it's meeting place.

 So the decision was made to build a sanctuary with whatever materials God provided.

The sanctuary was provided in the form of a vacated health spa in the middle of a Long Beach shopping center. 

After acquiring the building, Shekinah was faced with the problem of reconstruction and interior decoration. 

There was little experience in such areas but prayers were said and work began.

Help came, seemingly, from the far ends of the earth.

 It came in strange forms; a thousand dollar check in the offering, volunteer assistance from a licensed carpenter and donated building materials which could have cost hundreds of dollars.

 No individual could take the credit because everyone was involved.

 As the members of Shekinah Fellowship built their own sanctuary, they found themselves also building a bond of fellowship and partnership which would endure for years to come.

Growth increased and the Saturday night services were becoming more structured, as people from various age groups, and back grounds, began to attend. 

The healing service, which by itself lasted an hour, became an increasingly amazing part of the ministry. 

Originally, conditions such as minor colds, back problems and even sunburns characterized the heeling's which occurred. 

As the attendance increased, so did the miracles.

Through the gift of the word of knowledge, Brant would begin calling out the names of various illnesses which were present in the congregation. 

Those were either healed or in need of healing would begin to come forward for prayer and then would testify to the miracle God had performed in their body.Instant recoveries of arthritis, deafness, and crippling diseases were reported during the time of testimonies.

The building, which had been reconstructed in October, 1972, held a maximum capacity of three hundred.

 By December, it was overcrowded. Legally, services could no longer be held there because it was too hazardous.\

A hugh Foursquare Church existed only a few blocks away from Shekinah's building.

 It was obvious that growth was going to continue, so the next building used for services should logically be one with ample room for expansion.

On several occasions, ministers from Shekinah would drive by the large, white, Foursquare sanctuary and consider possibilities, but it all seemed too fantastic to even consider.

 The pastor of the church had never attended a Shekinah service and perhaps knew nothing of them.

The need was pressing, so finally a meeting was arranged between Steven Boyd, Shekinah's associate pastor, and Rev. Billy Adams, pastor of the Long Beach Neighborhood Foursquare Church.

Rev. Adams had been personally acquainted with Aimee Semple Mcpherson, founder of the Foursquare denomination. 

He had preached to capacity crowds at Angelus Temple, headquarters of the Foursquare organization, and had traveled around the world as an evangelist and missionary. 

Thousands attended his meetings in cities throughout the United States.

To the suprise of perhaps every church in Long Beach, Pastor Adams gave Shekinah permission to use his sanctuary for weekly services. 

It had the capacity to seat a thousand people.

 So in January 1973, Shekinah Fellowship met at the Foursquare Church and continues to do so. (Editors Note: this was written in 1975)

The Expansion

Once the move to the Foursquare Church was made, expansion took on almost unbelievable proportions.

 Pastor Adams had a fatherly concern for the young ministers of Shekinah fellowship and his guidance and advice proved to be the very thing needed for the ministry's growth.

The month of June marked two important steps for Shekinah- the very first outreach service was held in San Diego and the beginning of a weekly radio program, "The Shekinah Fellowship Hour."

Meanwhile, the services in Long Beach continued to grow. 

As the ministry became more widely known, new opportunities to minister in various churches developed.

The next city Shekinah began to visit was Bakersfield. 

It was at this time that the first television program was produced. "Shekinah Fellowship Presents A Very Special Special" was taped in Santa Ana and has been shown in cities both on the east and west coasts.

 The radio program also increased in scope and popularity.

 "The Shekinah Fellowship Hour" was now being heard in various states such as Washington and Arizona.

By December 1973, the Saturday night meetings in the Long Beach Foursquare Church were filled to capacity.

 Eleven months had passed since Brant Baker had begun services in the new facilities and approximately one thousand people attended each week. 

A 90 voice choir became a part of the ministry, along with an orchestra and two singing groups. 

Miracles of healing had increased tremendously, with some cases of cancer, blindness and similarly hopeless diseases and conditions being cured instantly during the meetings.

A vision of unity among the many members of the Body of Christ inspired the members of Shekinah Fellowship.

 As more people from nearly every church denomination continued to attend, it was soon evident that Shekinah Fellowship was a meeting ground in which any man or woman, naming the name of Christ, would be welcomed.

A show of hands revealed the various denominations as Brant called them out. 

A surprising number of Catholics, Baptists and Presbyterians were seated in the midst of Pentecostals and Full Gospel believers. 

Clearly, it was understood that they had come to Shekinah, not the organization, but literally, "the presence of God," who knows no denominational boundary.

The Easter Gathering

The next major step the ministry took occurred in April, 1974.

 A few months earlier, Brant announced a plan which he felt God had laid upon his heart- a four-day series of Easter services to be held in the Long Beach Municipal Auditorium. 

The auditorium seated over three thousand people, requiring more ushers and assisting ministers than Shekinah had.

The real test of faith was the cost. 

Over fifteen thousand dollars would be needed for expenses.

There is a motto both common and dear to Shekinah, "When God guides, God provides."

 So plans for the Shekinah Fellowship Easter In gathering began.

The Fellowship wasn't really that well known and word-of-mouth would not have been sufficient.

Advertisements were placed in various newspapers and periodicals. 

Television spots were scheduled. Radio commercials were recorded and played on several stations.

 Young artists produced hugh posters which the Long Beach Public Transportation System carried throughout the main streets of the city spreading the word that a divine healing service was to be held downtown.

The interior of the Municipal Auditorium was bleak and dingy. 

It was hardly suitable for the joyous services to be conducted there. 

Decorations were clearly needed, yet it was impossible to purchase expensive decorative objects.

 Hugh flowers were constructed out of cardboard and tin foil, flanked with multicolored petals and leaves.

 Signs were designed to be placed at strategic points to encourage those who read them to "Look to Jesus."

The support from the local churches was essential for success of the in gathering.

 Untold personal sacrifices had to be made by each individual and no man was without his particular difficulty.

 Long hours, last minute changes and personal conflicts combined to force each minister to seriously consider his willingness to fulfill his calling.

The valuable lessons learned during the months of planning and preparation made it all worthwhile.

True to His word, God blessed the services. 

The first night special guests, Dino Kartsonakis and Madame Bilquis Sheikh, appeared.

 Dino, world famous pianist with the Kathryn Kuhlman ministry, performed for a half hour giving brief testimonies and comments between numbers. 

Madame Sheikh, former assistant to the President of Pakistan, gave her glorious testimony. 

She told of her conversion from the Muslim faith to Christianity.

On Friday evening a special musical presentation, "Glory To God," was presented by the choir, orchestra and various soloists.

 The Saturday evening meeting drew the largest crowd and a divine healing service highlighted the evening. 

Sunday afternoon the final service was conducted.

 Rev. Billy Adams testimony had become indescribably dear to the hearts of all those involved with Shekinah Fellowship who had come to know him so well.

 He represented the fatherly care and concern which every young person so desperately needed.

The exposure the ministry received during the Ingathering opened new doors in several southern California cities. 

Regular services began in Canoga Park, Palm Springs and Escondido. 

More television shows were also produced and shown on major network stations. 

Services in the Long Beach Municipal Auditorium continued to be held monthly.

 However, the auditorium was scheduled for reconstruction within a few months and no other Long Beach building was adequate for the monthly Shekinah Fellowship services.

 But, God had a blessing in store for Shekinah.

Angelus Temple
It came when Dr. Rolf McPhearson and the Board of Directors invited Brant and the ministry to conduct the evening service at Angelus Temple on the Fourth of July.

 The invitation was a direct fulfillment of the promise God had made to Brant a year earlier when he had visited AngelusTemple.

When he had come down to the front platform after the service, suddenly, he had a portend that someday, somehow, he would be ministering on the very platform.

Along with the excitment of ministering at Angelus Temple, there arose an interest in the background of the Foursquare denomination and it's founder, Aimee Semple McPhearson. 

Several of the ministers of Shekinah, including Brant, began reading the accounts of Mrs. McPhearson's campaigns.

 It became more evident then ever that revival was desperately needed.

The night before the Fourth of July service was to be held, a special service was conducted in Long Beach. 

Brant read aloud to the entire congregation excerpts from Mrs. McPhearson's book, "This is That." 

Then a lengthy prayer meeting was conducted. 

The entire ministry and congregation of Shekinah Fellowship beseeched God for an outpouring of His Spirit and power such as the world had never seen.

On July 4, 1974, the all-day Holy Ghost Rally at Angelus Temple was concluded with a divine healing service conducted by Rev. Baker and Shekinah Fellowship. 

The same group which had began two years earlier in a living room was now ministering in the headquaters of the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel.

The evening was glourious! 

Within weeks it was decided that Shekinah should begin holding monthly services at the temple.

Monthly services are being held at Angelus Temple.

 The support and co-operation of the Angelus Temple Board of Directors, along with Pastor Holland and Dr. and Mrs. Rolf McPherson, have been of great help to the ministry.

In Long Beach, the services in the Foursquare Church draw capacity crowds every Saturday night. 

Oftentimes, the building located next to the sanctuary serves as an overflow room. 

 Those who are unable to find a seat in the main building watch the service over closed circuit television.

Four days of almost every week are spent traveling. 

Shekinah holds monthly services in Los Angelus, San Marcos, Riverside and semi-regular services in San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, Santa Monica, Burbank and Brea.

New churches are visited nearly every week. 

You may find a Shekinah Fellowship service in a municipal auditorium or a church building which seats a little over a hundred.

 Services are now being held in Catholic santuaries, Baptist seminaries, three thousand saet Temples, bowling alleys or dining rooms.

 It is Brant's firm conviction that God is equally present in each place. 

The Shekinah Fellowship television program is now seen weekly on KCOP Channel 13 Sunday morning at 7:30 and Sunday afternoon at 12:00, in addition to broadcast at various times over UHF stations. 

The ministry's radio program currently airs over countless numbers of stations throughout the country.

In Long Beach, Bible classes are available, without cost, Monday through Friday from 1:00-4:00 PM.

 Every night of the week Bible studies are given during a time of intimate, informal worship.

Since Shekinah Fellowship's beginning in 1971, eight young men have been ordained as licensed ministers of the Gospel.

 The ministry is composed of up to two hundred young people who perform their specific functions simultaneously during the services.

The choir consists of 125 members. 

Over fifty workers assist Brant during the healing service by ministering to and praying for those who come seeking healing.

 Ushers, counselors, technicians and many other areas of ministry are available to anyone desiring to donate his service.

The Vision.

In the Old Testament days, it was common for God to send prophets to heathen nations predicting their doom if they failed to repent.

 He also sent prophets to His own people pointing out their failures and warning them not to continue in rebellion or indiffrence toward their God.

 Shekinah Fellowship feels the burden for souls, especially in these evil days. 

Their is a special commission to awaken the Church, the entire Body of Christ.

It does not take a great deal of insight to notice the contrast between the early Church of the New Testament days and the present Church. 

The commission to preach the Gospel seems to have either been forgotten or ignored.

What would be the effect if churches everywhere united their efforts to seek for the salvation of souls? 

Within the Body of Christ, is there not enough material, finance, manpower and energy to turn the world upside down?

Whenever Shekinah begins holding services in a new city, the support and co-operation of the churches in that area, regardless of denomination, is enlisted.

 Hopefully, such offer of assistance will encourage the churches of that town to work together on a regular basis, whether Shekinah is there or not.

The aim is to bring people into an awareness of the love and nearness of Jesus, while encouraging them to bring others into that same awareness.

 The world has yet to see what can be done along these lines.

When Brant began to realize the call of God and the plans He had for him, he was deeply concerned with the need for more people to respond to this call. 

The opportunities to minister with Shekinah are numerous.

 But more than that, the exhortations to "Give yourself to God and let Him do with you as He pleases," are constant.

This is Brant's continual plea- that all those who have been "born again" into the family of God would realize the anointing and power they have as a Christian.

(End of story. Or is it?)


 Greg Laurie Was A Part Of Shekinah Fellowship

Greg made this flier for Shekinah Fellowship when he was attending Shekinah in 1973.

He actually tried to go in the healing ministry direction early on, had to be influenced by Brant Baker's ministry.

I recall attending a home
fellowship in Laguna Beach that was taught by Mike Macintosh on Monday evenings in Laguna Beach.

couldn't be there one night so Greg filled in for him.

 During the course
 of Greg's meeting he started calling out healings that he felt the Lord
 was performing.

Don't recall if people were healed or not, but it was
cool to see Greg stepping out in faith.

 This was before Greg was well
known, when he was still in training by the Holy Spirit.

I recall sitting next to Greg in the back of the little Calvary Chapel
on Sunflower, he showed me a bible tract that he had drawn.

 It was drawn
 on some white cardboard.

 He was going to show it to Chuck Smith the

Greg was a very good artist.

And a very happy person who always
seemed to be getting revelations from the Word of God that he was so
eager to share with anyone willing to listen to him.

 I think that Greg
was the original energizer bunny, he had so much enthusiasm and zeal.

 Who knew that this would grow into what we see in his life today.

I marvel that he has never changed!

 What you see today is what we saw in
him as teenagers.

  Although I do see a seriousness that has developed
over the years and spiritual battles that he has faced.

 I bless the man
of God!

Greg's story in his own words.

 What I received from some who responded to my request for information on Shekinah Fellowship and Brant Baker

The People Speak

Rev. Brant Baker

Come and see the works of God

Here is what some of you have told me. 

I know that there are others who are waiting to see what comes of my efforts to tell the Shekinah story before they step up to the plate.

 I have left out some of what was told to me because it serves no point in our Christian growth and progress together in the Lord Jesus Christ.

 It is the parts from all of you who were there that tells the story and helps us to assemble the bigger picture.


"I have on my bookshelf, by David Edwin Harrell Jr., a book entitled "All Things Are Possible, The Healing and Charismatic Revivals in Modern American".

 It's an excellent book on the healing revivals in America, going back to the 1950s, but
it's greatest deficiency is that it entirely overlooks the story of Shekinah Fellowship. 

If Harrell were ever made aware of it, I am sure he would have recognized immediately how it connects with, and continues, the ministry of Katherine Kuhlman, and also that it shows a important connection with the "Jesus Movement." 

Furthermore, some people have endeavored to chronicle the history of
the "Jesus Movement". 

Again, Shekinah Fellowship is curiously absent from such accounts, albeit during the early 1970s it had an important role in Southern California area."

As a mere attendee of Shekinah Fellowship at Pastor Billy Adams church on Saturday nights I never knew what was taking place behind the scenes.

I don't think that any of us "attendees" knew that anything was wrong.

My first clue was one Saturday night ( 1973? ) Randy West gave a small sermonette from the platform prior to Brant making his customary late entrance.

Randy's topic was, "God created them Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve."

A few years later (about 1975) I needed some business cards printed so I went to Hoover printing in Costa Mesa and was blessed to see Randy West working behind the counter.

I always enjoyed Randy's music and his personality.

Of course I asked him if he was still in the ministry of Shekinah Fellowship.

He told me he was no longer in that ministry.

I recall being really shocked because he was such a prominent figure there.

At the time I didn't understand why he would have left such a great powerful ministry.

I was confused to say the least.

Fast-forward to the 90's.

I found out that Brant's death was from Aids.

I put together all the clues over the years that were right in front of my face and had an aha moment of a sort.

I tried to be supportive of Jo Ellen Baker as she attempted to recreate Shekinah Fellowship in Long Beach.

She held a few small meetings.

Michelle Corral was always there with her support as well.

Jo Ellen gave it all up and retreated to the desert where I vistited her once in an attempt to obtain some of the audio tapes and footage of Shekinah Fellowship she may have had.

She had a storage shed on the side of her trailer full of the stuff.

But she only gave up one low quality VHS tape recorded on a VCR from a broadcast.

She seemed super reluctant to talk about Shekinah Fellowship and was apparently very upset when the name of Lonnie Frisbee came up in conversation.

My surmising is that Brant may have been influenced at some point by Lonnie in a bad way.

And Jo Ellen did not approve at all.

I was sad when the news came to me that she had passed away.

I always wondered what may have become of that treasure trove of Shekinah Fellowship media she had in her possesion.

I visited a small meeting held by Michelle Corral in the early 90's.

She followed Brant's format exactly to the "T' but not much seemed to happen. She got emotional and scolded us attendees for not "having enough faith."

As my friends and I were leaving we observed her in the parking area with some of her staff, they looked like they were trying to comfort her, as she appeared to be still in a very emotional state.

A few years later I found her on the net and she had grown in maturity and I was blessed to see that indeed she was now actually functioning in the healing ministry.

Someone told me that she was instrumental in opening doors for Benny Hinn to operate in areas he would not have had access to.

Check out her ministry, you might like it and possibly find a new home.


 Rarely does a person from planet earth leave a legacy of any consequence no matter how long they live.

Moreover there is almost no opportunity available for someone who has an untimely death.  Time constraints
are limiting; the Joans of Arc scarce.  

The obvious and borderline unique legacy for Brant Baker is that he
was one of the few who became a time honored faith healer despite his brief time among us.  There has
been a development of a divinely appointed sequence for faith healers, each one appearing on the heals of
another, yet God prevents His new servant from emerging in a significant way until the former’s ministry is
over.  The line-up: Amy Semple McPherson, Kathryn Kuhlman, Brant Baker, Benny Hinn. 

 There are always
others, big and small, like Oral Roberts, Vicki Jamison (orig name), and Paula White who stem from a
separate and random genealogy chart.  In the Old Testament, prophets and faith healers, probably known
then as miracle workers, didn’t exactly line up the same way.  Sometimes two ministered simultaneously,
something like a parallel universe from a Star Trek episode.

What I’m seeing developing from David Sloane’s ongoing blog site is not just the expected legacy of a
youthful faith healer, but the beginning of a mind set from those who were within the expansive ministry –
the people who were up close and personal.  The Holy Spirit is still doing a miracle work within the hearts
and minds of the faithful.  It's thrilling to see it develop.  Some of the others, well, they're not there yet and
are living in a different space for now, maybe not yet realizing that God's calling upon them is far from over.

“Brant my precious friend, your legacy is developing as we speak.  There are those beginning
to get it because they are open to the Lord as you were.  What a rare thing within the once
traditional Christian right, and it’s because of your commitment to our living Lord,
and subsequently theirs, that this is developing all these years later.
Perhaps this applies to only the few, but whispers can now be heard within the quiet.”

God has shown me too much for me to just walk away.  I’ve experienced God’s power and precious
anointing.  Brant and I spent quality hours together for reasons I’m still only beginning to understand.  In
continuing Brant’s line of questioning…..why don’t more people hear Jesus or know what He is doing among
us?  Answer: many of them can’t because they’re not receptive His voice, and that is sometimes because of
their deliberate bigotry.  Jesus has been silenced by the “Christian right”.  He speaks no more to defiantly
deaf ears.  We have a new generation of Pharisees now.

I see more than a glimmer of light From David Sloane’s web site -
spiritual insight as a result of deliberate and sincere sensitivity to the Holy Spirit:

Brigid de Jong………. “I think there will be a lot of people off the streets, from the highways and byways, who
will be ushered into the wedding supper while the fat cat "Christians" are busy condemning everyone else
and passing around petitions”.

David Sloane………. “I know of a certainty that you love Jesus Christ with all of your heart.  I know He wraps
you in His love of acceptance as one who He has shed His blood for, fully knowing you”.

These wonderful Christians are sharing from their hearts.  They are examples of what godly people should
be, and this because they have ears sensitive to Jesus.


"Thank you David. 

It's incredible to hear Brant's voice again, takes me back 30 years.

I just received an email from an old Shekinah person telling me about your video on the Google search engine.

 It is really nice David and you did an excellent job on the photos and information about Brant.

 He would have been glad that you did it."

(Editors note:

When David Sloane started typing Bible Studies on his first computer, and printing them out to share with his friends, before everyone found out about the internet, including him, the Holy Spirit came upon him while he sat in his chair.

He was reminded of the time Brant baker came up to him in 1973, while putting his hand on David's shoulder and saying, "David you belong in this ministry.!"

At the time David did not understand, so he tucked it away in his heart and did not act upon it.

As the Holy Spirit was reminding David of the incident, he heard the words, "You will minister through the Keyboard to thousands and thousands of people all over the world."

Tears flowed as David was deeply impacted in the moment.

He didn't understand how this could even take place.

Fast-forward to the early 90's during the infancy of the internet.

David decided to start a blog.

Since he had been so deeply impacted by the ministry of Shekinah Fellowship and had very fond memories of it, he named his blog after it.

One day, once again as his fingers were tapping away at the keyboard, the Holy Spirit came upon him.

He came to the realization that the Word he had previously been given by the Holy Spirit years earlier had come to pass, his ministering was being seen by people from all over the earth through the miracle of the internet and this blog.

Pastor Brant Baker's words had come to pass.

Pastor Tilson Shumate ordained David into the ministry in 1992, calling him "A Fisher Of Men."

Today visitors come from all geographical locations to this blog consistently in fullfillment of the Holy Spirit's words.

David's tapping away at the keyboard went out to the ends of the earth! )


"There were times that we all got together but mainly it was to pray for people and to discuss things about the ministry.


 Brant's parents were generally always there together or at least one or the other were there.

 If Brant partied at all it was completely away from the ministry. 

He generally got together with friends during the week for dinner. 

Weekends he was completely spent because of the services. 

It took a great deal of energy to travel to so many places as well as the Saturday night services at Shekinah. 

We traveled all over the place: Oxnard, San Diego, Riverside, Phoenix, Rubidoux, etc.

 And he always had to prepare sermons even though people though he didn't prepare with text in hand at the services, he did read ALOT, generally the bible but he always listened to Chuck Smith on the radio and a few other ministers whose names have left my memory.

I don't think he ever had a problem at all until TBN dropped him from the network and people in the ministry started to leave. 

He couldn't cope with everything. 

It escalated from there and sometimes he would come to the services where he could not minister so Kevin would take over. 

As time went on, it became more and more frequent.

 We went down to Laguna Beach several times as he was staying down there to really gather his thoughts away from everything. 

We would go down and take down notes or pay his bills or generally just give him support.

 We went down once together and stayed over for the weekend to see if we could help at all. 

 This was at the beginning of the end when almost the entire ministry had left and he had to really reevaluate what was going on. 

He was estranged from his family and needed those who remained to stay close to him.

 Since all of us were working at the time, we went down on the weekends and take him to the services on Saturday night. "


"JoEllen was very protective of Brant and many times he felt suffocated by her.

 She and Bob knew exactly what shortcomings both Brant and Kevin had, but kept believing God would bring them through their struggles (Kevin was also gay and died of complications from aids).

As far as the inner circle was concerned, we were part of it for a brief time only because I volunteered for Brant in helping him with his bills (I did the accounting for him and kept his checkbook straight) and sometimes took him to the doctor or picked up his cleaning. 

I never asked a penny from him for what I did as I didn't think it was right.

 And because we lived so far away, there was only once that we were asked to attend a get together with Brant and his family and the Shekinah Singers ( that was the smaller group of singers) and we met at JoEllen's home in Brentwood. 

 Not very many people know this, but JoEllen came from a very wealthy family and her mother, Muddy, left a large inheritance for both Brant and Kevin - there was a trust that gave them money each month. 

Bob was in charge of that and that way they did not have to take anything from the ministry.

 Many people thought that Brant and Kevin were paid by the ministry but that wasn't correct, they put all the money into the ministry for the associate pastors and the running expenses (rental, utilities, supplies, etc).

Many in the choir were very shy, young teenagers and needed a lot of guidance.

They weren't included in the meetings because they were basically financial or strategy meetings with regard to the services. 

They had numerous afterglow meetings that everyone attended and worshipped which were incredible."

"So many wonderful memories of that time and so many that are very painful. 

The emails with you have brought back both, but it's okay.

 Some day I will tell my story of all or most of what went on during that time, I have many journals of the wonderful healing services and how God used all of us then and the incredible Word of Knowledge and prophecies that flowed through us, it was a wonderful growing time for both of us."

(Editor: Still waiting for that story to arrive!)


"... thus the beginning of Brant's downfall. 

Pastor Tom (Changed name to protect this person) went to TBN and they removed Brant from the network.

 They didn't even confront him or talk to him. 

Brant was devastated and did not even have an opportunity to talk with Paul and Jan Crouch about it. 

That's when Brant started on prescription drugs through his doctor (the doctor was on Sunset Blvd - Samson's). 

You see Brant had been seeing "Pastor Tom" for counseling and until the associate pastor spoke up, it was kept in the strictest of confidences because Pastor Tom was trying to help Brant.

 But once that man started talking, I think Pastor Tom figured he should lay out the entire problem to Paul and Jan so it wouldn't escalate into a much larger problem. 

What he should have done was to bring them all together including Brant and talk and pray about it together.

 I have always wondered what happened to that associate pastor - why was he at that gay bar?

I kind of doubt if it was to witness to the gay community, but you never know."


"As far as being supportive of Brant, it was not easy at times as our friends left and many in the congregation left also. 

Also during that time JoEllen and Kevin took over a lot of the functions while Brant was so ill after they were taken off of TBN. 

We lost a lot of our friendships during that time and some we have never gotten back, but there were a few that we still keep in contact with and that's been wonderful.

 Even some who left the ministry before us have seen our faithfulness, although they don't understand it, respect us for our beliefs in standing with Brant during the difficult times. 

So many Christians forget that we are like dust and nothing good comes from us, but the Lord.

 We are like filthy rags.

 Knowing that and acknowledging our short comings, made us realize without hesitation, that we had to help Brant during those months after everyone left.

 It was the only thing we could do, we couldn't abandon him, no matter what he had done. You just can't do that to a friend! 

We still carry those beliefs with us to this day."


"I don't know where Brant died as we did not hear about it until much later. 

We did not go to the memorial, but we went to Kevin's. 

It's so many years ago and Kevin died in August of 1987 which was right after my dad died, so I have lost about a year in my memory because of the trauma of my dad dying. 

I'll see if I have any archival information in my old computer and let you know. As I recall, Brant's name is not on the headstone and is buried with Kevin in the same grave or near it."


"We all have frailties and shortcomings and it's good that you put in the brief part about his lifestyle and that you focus mainly on the wonderful healings.

 If I can find some of the sermon tapes, I can send you copies if you're interested."


"I'm so glad that you wrote to us. 

I've kept so much inside for so many years that I know I've rambled a lot about Brant the past week that I thought maybe it was a little too much. 

So thank you.

We were very active in a church after we left Shekinah but have been wandering alot over the past decade. 

There is just nothing like Shekinah and the manifestation of those days. 

But I know that God is doing a mighty work as there are more and more people contacting me about Brant and Shekinah that went to those meetings 30 years ago. 

So many of us are hungry for that kind of closeness to the Lord and the purity that was there in the spirit. 

I know that God will raise all of us who were so blessed to be in that ministry again, I'm just not sure when. But I'm open to what the Lord wants from me."


"Thank you. Some of the photos are remarkable! 

 Where did Jim get all of these? 

He must have received them from choir members or staff as they are from the choir loft.

 Amazing. Thank you."


"Thank you so much! 

I've forwarded your websites to several people and although it's been difficult for us to hear Brant's voice again, I'm getting encouraging notes from them and they want updates! 

That's really surprising for me as I had a LOT of negative emails when I first posted the webpage on the internet. 

Some very threatening also. 

This is a good turn and I feel it's God's perfect timing. 

I also think Brant would be happy that his story is getting out there as well as all of us who participated in the ministry."


"My wife and I were a part of that group from about 1973 to 1975.

 It may have been longer than that...that is a long time back. 

We married in 74 and we slowly left that ministry. 

 Things were going on behind the scenes by that time which were unsettling to many.

 We were mostly involved during Brant's ministry at the Foursquare Church...and we helped with his outreach at the old Municipal Auditorium. 

Of interest to you, if I can find them, and if they still play, is a series of audio tapes I bought that were made at Shekinah Camp....which I think was the summer of 74 in Idyll wild.

 As I recall at that time Brant was anticipating a split within the group and there was a message about people falling away.

 Well, we left not too many months after that. 

When Shekinah moved on from the Foursquare Church...we stayed there with Pastor Adams and a chunk of the Shekinah members.

 We never were part of the West coast theater ministry.

 It was an interesting time that did send us on a Christian path.

 For many years I was a church soloist and youth leader at Long Beach First Methodist Church (I am officially a Methodist) and am currently a section leader at a Catholic Church (I'm not Catholic). 

Anyway, I don't know if anyone else has given you copies of those tapes....if I can find them, would you be interested? 

There is some of Brant teaching, and tapes of other leaders of Shekinah at that time.

 Most of them left that ministry near or after the time we moved on. 

It was interesting to see the pictures and hear Brant again on your site, and Susan's site."


" I'll keep an eye out for those tapes, I'm not sure of their exact location, but I run into them when looking for other things.

I have moved on from the type of ministry that Shekinah offered. 

It had it's time and place in my life and left good and bad memories that shaped who I am today.

 I appreciate the thoughts you sent, though it was obviously a form letter after your initial response, but my path goes ever forward and not back.

 It will be interesting to see if Shekinah Fellowship and Brant Baker's influence are felt again in cyber space.

 I will try and follow it, but I will not be a part.

 Evaluate the Lords will carefully.

 I watched too many people over the years take what was a spiritual flame and instead of providing God's warmth, ended up burning down the building. 

God be with you."


"...this is awesome. 

I passed it on to some friends... and downloaded some."


"...that is so much fun...thanks. 

I had such a complex how I looked back then and I see myself so differently....thanks...I have no pics of myself whatsoever from that time, so this is precious."


"I've been watching your video on google.

 I was wondering if I could have some of the photos that you used for the video?"

( Editor: Google has since discontinued their videos service and purchased Youtube. Which has made all of the Google videos unavailable. Check Youtube for them now.)


" I used to go to Brant services and was active in it. 

I started going to them when there where only a handful of people in a strip mall church ( 7th street Long Beach CA).

 We used to sit on the floor and listen to him.

 He had maybe 50 people which all became his helpers. 

I used to hold the microphone when people where healed up on stage. 

What a blessing that was. I was good friends with Lesa Green and Meg and Teddy etc.

 I still have a few pictures of everyone. 

I finally moved to N Cal when Kevin Brant's brother took over the ministry.I was not there at the end, but was there right from day one. 

I had heard of Brant while I was going to Calvary Chapel in the old days when Chuck was still in a house church and then in the tent."


..."thank you for your reply. 

I know I have audio tapes from Brant that I would buy , after the services. 

I have them in storage in N. Cal.

  I am looking for all the pictures I have, also have 2 from the retreats of everyone including JoEllen. 

Also 2 records of the coir and others.

 One of Lily Green.

 Jo Ellen I feel caused Brant to fall away. 

Do I know you from the meetings? "


"Thank you for your reply. 

I know and feel that you are doing a great service to keep Brant's memory alive. 

I have treasured the few pictures I have and all the memories.

 I will make and send ail to you as soon as I can, probably by next week.

I work in a psych Hospas a nurse the next 3 days and have 3 days off and will do this. 

I called my aunt to see if she will let me come up to North  Califronia and find those tapes that have been in her storage for the last 25 yrs. 

I also have contacted David Koerner the orchastra director [ do you remember him ] and he has nothing left from those days."


"I used to live in Huntington Beach, right next to Newport Beach and remember the baptisms on the beach.

 I will post on the web site what I remember from Brant.

 I wonder what ever happened to Kevin his brother. 

I remember him trying to preach.

 There at the end of the time when we where in the Fox west coast theater.."


"I find it also a blessing that I can write you and share the memories. 

I cant imagine Kevin dying also of aids. 

But I am not surprised. 

Did you know that Brant was engaged for a short time to Lesa Green? 

She is in some of the pictures I think.

 I will point her out next time.

 But he could not go through with it, she was devistated and went into a deep depression for a while, but thank God came out of it.

 I remember when I was on stage at times holding the Microphone to let the healed people speak on stage, that at times the power of God was so strong around Brant that it was hard to stay standing up."


"I know after I moved away from Shkinah I fell away for many years. 

I thought God did not want to use me anymore and could not understand why. 

I was young when I left about 20 yrs old. 

I lived in San Jose at that time and had a church bring Brant up there for a service."




"Thanks for the good words. 

I definitely feel the anointing of God in these projects. 

You see God do something awesome everyday. 

God bless your efforts. 

Keep in touch."


"The wooden cross Brant always wore was not carved by his brother...

He got it at the beach in a vending machine for 50 cents around 1971 or so and put it on a very expensive gold chain."


"Brant was the real article, while H_ _n is a Word-Faith false teacher, and not one of the "miracles" in any of his meetings has been found to be genuine, so I hate to hear or see his name next to Brant's, in terms of genuine Spiritual gifting.

 I was there in the 70's for a number of Brant's meetings, as I'm sure you were, and the presence of God in those meetings was absolutely phenomenal- beyond description.

I also went to one of ( Mr Bleep's) meetings, expecting the same Glorious Anointing, and I left disappointed and angry at the empty shirt named (Mr. Bleep), and in his pitiful attempts to whip up the crowd into an emotional frenzy.

 Brant never needed to whip up anybody- God's presence was simply "there", and, like Miss Kuhlman, he never allowed any fanaticism in his services... 

Maybe others are fooled, or maybe they simply miss Kathryn Kuhlman and Brant so much that they're willing to put up with a second-rate look alike.

 As for myself, I miss Brant Baker and his ministry very much- Forgive me for going on about this, David.

When I saw your site on the web, I caught the first real glimpse of something I hadn't known in over 30 years, and it was a real blessing! 

 Many thanks for doing that."


"The pity is that at one time there were over 400 of these messages available on audio tape, and I really have only a select few by comparison...

Right after Brant's death, I called the ministry phone number and talked with Linda (don't remember her last name) for about 45 minutes, lamenting Brant's death and reminiscing about the glorious meetings he'd held. 

He did come up to the Seattle area a number of times, and I returned to the L.A. area to visit and attend some of the services there, too.

 She ended up saying "At least we still have the tapes", and said the ministry phone number would remain open for a while, but when I tried to call back just a few days later, the number had been disconnected- ending my attempt to ever get into contact with those who were involved with the ministry...

Until I found Susan Dixon's website, and , finally, after another 5 years- Your site. 

Susan had told me that someone named Anne Hume had the remaining Shekinah material, and gave me her e-mail address, but after Anne had said she'd try to dig these things up, I never heard from her again, despite repeated e-mails to her...

I began to wonder if people were hiding something from me, as if I hadn't known about the problems Brant was having at the time- problems which eventually ended his ministry, as well as his life...... 

Which brings me to you- As I mentioned in a previous e-mail, You and Susan Dixon are the ONLY people I've been able to contact from the ministry since Brant's death, and that after many years- 

I hope more will come forward in the very near future, but for now, you're it.

 One of the saddest of my experiences came about 5 years ago when I made the trip To North Hollywood First Assembly to find someone- ANYONE who remembered Brant Baker and Shekinah Fellowship. 

Of all the people I spoke with- including the Pastor- Only ONE elderly man from the congregation had the slightest recollection of who Brant was..."Didn't he hang out with Kathryn Kuhlman."


"...I can see that you got some of the existing photos on your website from the little booklet, "The Anointing" by Brant- Great book! 

I could e-mail your friend, Pastor Tilson, but I don't know what I'd say to him that I haven't said to you already. 

Nobody but Susan Dixon has been willing to really talk about the Shekinah Fellowship days with me after all this time. 

It's sad that some of the old choir members are having a hard time accepting you- Maybe they want to just let the old memories lie or something, but I simply can't."


"Wow, what a touching website you put together....

Funny, I had been told years ago of several of the things that the site mentioned, which confirmed to me that they were indeed true... 

Through the years, God had periodically put people in my path who had either been involved in that ministry, or knew someone who was involved, so I was getting, through different sources, a pretty accurate picture of the ministry, from the height of it to it's downfall- 

One man in particular, who was VERY involved in the ministry, responded to my inquiry about Brant and Shekinah by saying "My take on Shekinah was that it was a great move of God, and that Brant in particular was an unusually gifted man..."

 Someday maybe we can talk about it in detail, but it's as if God had prepared me for all of it, the good and the bad, over a very long period of time, so that I could have a complete picture of it in my mind.

 In the end, God had blessed Brant and Shekinah Fellowship almost beyond measure, and that's what matters when looking back at it all these years later........"




"You're absolutely right about God's anointing on Shekinah Fellowship and I have believed through all of these years, that even though Brant is with the Lord now, that that anointing- in all of its Glory and all of its power- has not disappeared forever.

 Maybe that's why I've kept all those magazines and tapes for so many years. 

You're right also, as I said before, that I MUST share this stuff with others, and you've made it possible by your website...

I don't want to keep repeating myself, but it's as if God had me keeping all of those things safe and sound, through many moves, just for the purpose of bringing all of them out at this particular time in history, just as you had told me... 

I know the real from the counterfeit, and that is how I know that some ministries that have come to prominence since the Shekinah Fellowship days are simply "smoke and mirrors"...

I'm not going to bad-mouth anyone or any ministry, but since you know from experience just how powerful that anointing was, I'm guessing that you know what I mean...

Shekinah Fellowship is not finished and that wonderful anointing and God's Presence are not merely a thing of the past..."


"God is going to once again perform a Mighty Move of His Spirit in the same way as before, and when it begins to happen, all counterfeits and false teachings will pale by comparison-simply because people will once again see the real thing- 

Once you've experienced the genuine, as you told me, then it's impossible to be satisfied with any cheap imitation! 

David, I want you to know that I'm not some fanatic who gets easily blown around by wild shows of emotional excitement or anything like that, and even though I miss Brant and the ministry so much, I will not settle for anything less than the reality of that anointing- no matter how long it takes to find and be a part of it, and I believe that your website may be the beginning of it- sure seems like it, huh? 

Thanks for the encouragement."


"The first time I saw Brant was in March of 1975. 

I had gotten saved two months before and some of my family and I decided to visit the L.A. area and witness to other family members and friends...

We were at North Hollywood First Assembly of God and Pastor Sanders asked Brant to come up and tell everybody what God had been doing in the meetings. 

When he spoke, I thought he looked kind of silly, the big wooden cross and all. 

That night we saw him on TBN and we decided to go to the Angelus Temple to see him the next day. 

It was the day before we saw Kathryn Kuhlman at the Shrine Auditorium.

 I was really taken back by Brant, just as much as when I saw Miss Kuhlman the next day.

 To make a long story short, Brant came up to Westminster Assembly Church in Seattle a year later and when I saw him and the ministry that night, I was never the same- To this very day!

 He came up several times during the year, as well as to Tacoma, 45 minutes drive from Seattle. 

I can't tell you just yet why his ministry had such a lasting affect on me (someday we'll talk about it, I'm sure). 

All I can say for now is that I was changed from that day forward.

 The Holy Spirit did quite a work in me and nothing since has affected me as much...

It was through friends who were there when things went bad that I got a picture of the bad stuff that was happening...

Funny, but I would run into someone who knew somebody connected with the ministry, or a friend of mine knew someone from the ministry....all at different times- but as I said before, I got a pretty accurate picture of what was going on. 

I could give you names and you'd instantly recognize them. 

Someday we'll talk about it all. 

The main thing is that I never lost faith in that ministry because I knew that God's Hand was upon it, even when friends told me I was a fool for not walking away from it all...

I was constantly praying for Brant and his struggles at the time and there was actually a moment- several months before he died- that I knew that God was going to take him home. 

It broke my heart when I heard the news, yet I knew it was going to happen ( I'm not crazy-honestly).

 Let's talk sometime when you have an opportunity, OK? There's so much more to say about all of this."


"I'll tell you, I can really relate to the sadness about the demise of Shekinah- and I was one of those who knew the Glory that came from that ministry and the memory has never left me!

 On more than one occasion, I would uncontrollably weep, even sob, minutes before Brant would come from behind the curtain and onto the stage, so great was the Presence of God, and every time he came up to the podium, I could see the Glory of God on him- it was as if I'd been put into a different dimension. 

I'm not surprised though, that some didn't like him. 

I took a couple of my friends from my dorm while attending Northwest College to see Shekinah, and one of them didn't like Brant one bit.

 I wondered how he wasn't immersed in the Glory of God as I was, but I know that I was never the same after these services, regardless of how anyone else may have felt..... 

That Shekinah Magazine with Miss Kuhlman on the cover has a photo of Susan Dixon on page 21, with her accompanyi ng testimony. SHE has no doubt as to the Power of God to heal!

By the way- as a side note, I'll tell you that the first time Brant prayed for me, I was standing in line for prayer at North Hollywood First Assembly of God and when Brant turned to me, I could feel waves of Glory coming from him.

 I can't explain it, but I was there and I remember it."


"I just viewed "Fear Not" and I'm impressed with the job you did with it!"


"David- I certainly agree with you about Brant's teachings.

 He was unique and he really got the point home, you could sense the Holy Spirit's anointing when he spoke.

 I'm excited to be a part of bringing this all together, I certainly couldn't do what you do with the tapes and photos, but it's cool to even have a bit in the process.

 All these years I thought I was saving the tapes and magazines for me, but God had other ideas, and I'd rather go with His plans than mine! \

I am missing ONE issue of Shekinah Fellowship Magazine (Winter 1975- I've never seen it), I have all the others that were printed.

 Maybe an old Shekinah member has one that I can copy, you never know.

 I AM expecting many more people to come forward with more tapes and other memorabilia, it's just a matter of time.
And God dealing with hearts!

 As I said, there were originally more than 500 tapes available, so I may be just scratching the surface with the ones I have. You'll soon have them in your hands- God Bless you!"


"His teachings, as you said, are really unique, and after you're finished listening to a tape, you walk away wanting that intimate  relationship with Jesus that he always talked about, not trying to follow a bunch of rules, but just abiding in Christ.

Very powerful and life-changing!

I'm praying for the tapes' influence on many people, both who've never heard Brant before, and those who remember him and knew that anointing that God placed upon him.

God bless you and all your efforts"


"Thank you, David, for the kind words.

I know without a doubt that God will bless this endeavor, and your untiring efforts!

Some- maybe many- people will be hesitant to get into detail about Shekinah, but others will come forward, I know it.

I must tell you that I spoke with Joe over the phone about three years ago and he did give me his perspective on the ministry, which I shared with you in a previous e-mail, but I left out his name.

He wrote a number of the articles in Shekinah Fellowship Magazine and as you well know, was a huge part of that ministry."


"I was absolutely speechless during my viewing of your video.

I hadn't seen Brant in so many years, and it only confirmed what I'd told you before.

Nothing today, and I mean NOTHING even comes close!

 Anybody with the slightest bit of Spiritual discernment could see that.

What a blessing that was to me.

I still don't know what to say, I haven't been the same since viewing it."


There are some interesting web sites which explain a lot about Brant's life early-on and the formation of

Shekinah Fellowship. 

 They're fascinating to me because I knew little of that.  Brant was reluctant to share
much of his past.  I was at the other end of the ministry and sometimes wonder how things would have
turned out if I had known Brant at the beginning, kind of sitting with my arms folded stupefied like the angels
will be when we tell them about salvation.  The common denominator to these internet testimonies and
attributions which take on various forms such as blogs, videos and music, is the craving to grab even a slice
of what once was, another touch of the Holy Spirit, one more sense of belonging, anything to combat the
void deep down inside.

My friend Susie, a modern day saint in my opinion, will mention names of people I don't remember because
she was involved with Shekinah for such a long time.  I remember a lot though - we all do because it was the
best time we ever had.  The Lord told me years ago that I had been spared for a reason.  Now with
almost all my friends dead, I am acutely aware of my call to share my thoughts so that someone, anyone,
might benefit, understanding that we bring different experiences to the table but serve the same
omniscient Lord of all.

Everyone wanted a piece of him, and I can't help but wonder if it was that way with Jesus too.  No wonder
Brant retreated to the security of a handful of guys just like Jesus did with His twelve.  He deliberately kept
us separated as best he could from the rest of the ministry.  He was attempting to live alternate lifestyles.
Brant was renting the house on Spaulding Ave in West Hollywood that we had vacated.  We were in our new
house just down the street and around the corner, and I guess in a way relieved that he was no longer our
housemate.  Undoubtedly there was a path worn on the pavement between the two houses.  His new
landlords Jay and Don thought he was a nut case, and admittedly Brant's demeanor could be taken as
lacking in social graces on occasion.  Let’s face it, you never knew where his head was at.

News flash: gay Christians exist and move in the same spiritual gifts as anyone else.  We were his friends.
That’s not to say he didn’t have others.  He had plenty, but he needed to confide in guys like himself who
were born-again, Spirit filled, and gay.  On a typical early evening, calls would have come in from Forest
and Barbara who were really good to him, the energetic Trish probably on her way to hand out tracks up on
the Boulevard, his mother Jo Ellen, his brother Kevin who seldom got his calls returned, Jan Blessing, and a
number of others all from the ministry.  Busy busy. The ministry had grown and the phone calls increased
proportionately.  He would decide "no" to responding to all of the above more often than any of them would
want to know.  With that, whichever guys were free would meet Brant at our favorite restaurant Chez Claude.
It was adorable and had great food, and it was determined that no one outside our group would ever hear
about it.  Too many groupies lurking about.  The restaurant is long gone now, but the private moments
linger in my head.

I helped provide an escape route for him whenever he needed it.  Brant and I shared a lot of personal times,
the warm friendship kind, talking about life and becoming close enough to comfortably confide in each other.
Yes I saw the growing torment within him and the choices he would need to face, but that would be later.
Soon to come would be the miserable week at the cottage in Laguna with Brant being torn between
what he perceived to be his mother’s dominance versus the ministry’s health, and the horrors of that
week linger heavily in the minds of several of us.  Only the few would be privy to those moments,
sparing the others.

We used to go cowboy dancing together up the street at a gay bar and that was hardly a laid back activity
– lots of energy and a few bottles of beer which never affected any of us because we line danced and
two-stepped them off.  Lets face it, the ministry groupies would never have thought of stalking us there,
and we knew it.  We’d come home exhausted, having laughed all the way home, both of us with our spirited
sense of humor.  All of us guys were on the Monday night bowling league which hosted several hundred men
and about three women.  The lesbians and gay men in those days hadn’t bonded yet.  It wasn’t until
the AIDS epidemic occurred, when the women stepped up to the plate and ministered to the men.
Then we took a good look at each other and decided we were family after all.

Lest you think we were exclusively props for the perfecting of his Houdini style disappearing act, I will take
you to one particular afternoon in his home; my former house.  Location: bedroom.  Brant and his partner
Michael D were sitting at the head of the bed.  Yes, as in significant other.  The rest of the bed (surprised it
didn’t collapse) was supporting David who was one of Brant’s body guards, Jerry who was the organist, my
partner Vince who was a word of knowledge minister/prayer warrior and confidante of Brant’s, and me,
appointed as one of the three word of knowledge facilitators.  The other Michael C wasn’t there, neither was
Greg the choir director.  The Spirit of prophecy flowed from Brant as he imparted knowledge from the Lord
to each of us in a long session.  It had to do with God’s directing our lives in light of a new level of the Holy
Spirit which we had already begun and were moving into.  In retrospect it all came into being soon enough.
An uncommon anointing of God had come upon the group as the Holy Spirit’s presence filled the room; the
house.  At one point I left the bedroom and sat by myself in the living room.  There was a reason.
The rest I cannot share because its something I alone must deal with.

The house on Spaulding wasn’t exactly the best kept secret.  At one time Brant held a ministry meeting in the
main living room area, and another time he had a ministry party at the house.  Ministry in this case meant the
core 45 who were most intricately involved.  Most of the rest hadn’t a clue as to what was really going on,
and wouldn’t get it even if we told them.

I have never been one to shy away from questioning anything, and to have a friend so anointed of the Lord
and moving so powerfully within that anointing, well, I learned some spiritual truths and principles unlike
anything I've experienced since, and won't until I'm one with Jesus in the next realm.  In short time I became
very involved in Shekinah.  In the beginning it had a lot of “ups” and in the end it's share of “downs”.  We
have all moved on.  As for Brant, God had lifted him up to be His humble servant.  Since then I have been
allowed to serve in a different way, but then perhaps maybe not so differently after all.

Of course I knew, we all knew.  I remember asking Brant what would happen if his gift left him?  We talked
about how long he could move in the overflow or afterglow or whatever you want to call it, before it would be
detected by the masses.  We talked about what if this, and what if that.  When things started to go bad, when
I could see his torment surfacing so that others were noticing, his struggle, problems from supposed
supporters developing, problems with his overbearing mother, I knew like everyone else close to him that
the end was in sight.  We talked about that too.  Rick and Brigid were concerned.  Randy and Susie were
concerned.  Pat and Kare were concerned.  Terry and Sue were concerned.  Vince and I were concerned.
Everyone who had insider insight cared.  I remember our agreeing with each other that none of us would
ever likely be in such an intense and powerful Spirit led ministry again – other ministries yes,
but not the same.  Self-fulfilling prophecy.

For an everyday kind of guy to have an anointed faith healer as a pal and intimate friend - I am so blessed
and thank God continually for honoring me by trusting me in this way.  To go through life knowing what I
know because of Brant necessitates an uncommon responsibility.  Brant knew I could handle it when I didn't.
He spent a lot of time building my confidence.  Training me.  He prophesied over me numerous times,
privately and in the presence of “the group”.  The Shekinah Song includes the phrase "lifted up to be the
servant of all".  What a calling to serve the Lord and His people.  My journey has led me on roads less
traveled, yet I testify to you that Jesus has led me and the Holy Spirit has directed me.  My friend Brant and I
will be together again not so far into the future, and we'll catch up where we left off.  Maybe our gang of guys
will sit at the feet of Jesus and have a loving reminiscence along with a lot of laughs.  And maybe the whole
conglomeration of Shekinah people can have one big reunion with a revival service bringing the highest glory
and honor to King Jesus.  I look forward to it.  Kathryn Kuhlman is invited too.

I can’t remember exactly how it was put, but I read something on an internet blog, which went something like
this…..”like a shooting star zooming across the sky on a clear night for all to see, it’s brilliance almost
too much to bear, so was Brant’s presence amoung us.  Then darkness snuffed it out.”  Whoever wrote
those words had some insight.

As mentioned above, the Lord revealed to me that I have been spared for a reason.  David died, Jerry died,
Michael died, and Brant died.  I lost contact with Greg, but he could be dead too.  All of them young.  All of
them talented.  All of them undeniably belonging to Jesus.  They’re the beginning of a list so long that
I stopped writing the names down after the first 100.  Do I miss them?  Something awful, but I have to wait.
I am still here because my work isn’t done.  Jesus has told me that I must tell the story.  I’m working on it.
When book #2 comes out, you’re in for a treat and some answers.

All love, no matter how passionate, pales in comparison when the Holy Spirit fills the room.  Kathryn Kuhlman
used to say “You want to know what it requires?  It requires everything”.  Brant had a conflict with
the "everything."  Sadly, so do most of us.


"David, I got the DVD today and watched it.

 It sure looks better on the TV than it does on the computer.

 I tell you, I'm still coming down from watching it.

It made me so sad to realize that Brant's gone, and that so many people will never know of him, but then that's what your website is all about.

 My 12 year old son came into the room while I was watching the video and asked, "Why are those people fainting when that guy touches them?"

I told him that I would explain it to him later on.

I was really involved in it and didn't have time to explain.

I did tell him that "that guy" had prayed for me like that many years ago.

 He then asked, "Did you fall down too?"

 I've got lots to explain to him.

Your website is so important.

Just keep on doing all you can, David!

 Many thanks again for the DVD,I really appreciate it!"


For days after that I couldn't stop.  I would be walking down the street praising away in tongues and getting
unusual glances from strangers. 

 Thus it had begun. 

 I've never stopped since, and why would I want to?  

Not too long afterward I became very involved in Shekinah Fellowship in Long Beach where the gifts of the Holy
Spirit flowed like Victoria Falls.

  Speaking in tongues was only the beginning. 

 And kind of like Apollos who needed Priscilla and Aquilla to bring him further along, I quickly learned that there was even more.

  The faith healer whom the ministry was formed around was Brant Baker.  He and I became quick friends and palled around together.  

At one point we were roommates briefly and he moved into the house my partner and I had
been renting up the street.  

Not only were those fun days, but I learned so much about walking in the Spirit
for real.

  The first time I prayed for someone who fell over in the Spirit, I think I was already prepared to be
used of the Lord in that capacity because I never even batted an eyelash. 

 I looked down at her sprawled out on the floor and saw an expressing of contentment on her face.  She was beaming and having a conversation with Jesus.  

Probably the lack of strong reaction was because I had acquired some of the habit of surrendering to the Holy Spirit from being around Brant so much.

  When not in a ministering capacity, we clowned around a lot too and had some outrageous adventures together, but living in a sensitive mode to the Holy Spirit was part of Brant and it became part of me too.


"The last time I checked, your first video/audio had almost 900 hits.

That's great!

This is just the beginning.

I prepped a long e-mail to Pastor Tilson (took me almost an hour, slow as I am), but looks like his e-mail has been changed and it didn't go through- Good thing too, because after that, I looked at your (Mr.Bleep) photos and saw that Pastor Tilson had his picture taken with him, and if my e-mail had gone through, he probably wouldn't have appreciated some of what I'd expressed about (Mr.Bleep) and his ministry."


"David, I'm really taken back by your last e-mail.

I don't have time now, because I have to work early tomorrow (Friday), and as I've already said, I'm a pitifully s-l-o-w typist, but I will e-mail you fully tomorrow evening in response.

Suffice it to say that any apprehension I may have had in terms of who you are or what you're about- has been completely laid to rest.

 As I read your e-mail, I was hit with the fact that you are genuine, that you know what you're talking about (anointing, etc. and you were there), and that we are one in the Spirit.

My mind kept saying AMEN to the topics that you addressed, and I'll go into that more fully tomorrow evening.

God bless you!"


"Hi, David, I’m an acquaintance of Susan Dixon and recently saw your feature on Brant Baker on the web- I e-mailed Susan to see if she’d seen it and she said that she had, and that she’d given you permission to use some of her photos.

I remember the ministry very well and wondered if we could talk about Brant and the ministry..."


"Thanks david"


"I honestly don't have anything good to say about that ministry.

 I guess I not only saw too much but then there was what the Lord was showing me.

What I can say is that God is Always teaching, exhorting, and blessing his people no matter what.

 I had some incredible times in the Holy Spirit but Shekinah reminded me of elementary school, which, if you were unpopular, was like Nightmare from Elm Street.

In other words there was a giant pecking order at Shekinah.

 The gay insecurity was the root of it I am sure, but there was this 'inner circle,' that no one could penetrate and everyone wanted to be 'part of them.'

 It was made up of Brant, his brother, Claudia, Joe Dallas (the pianist who last time I heard had a ministry for recovery from that lifestyle), and when they were part of the ministry in the early days, Randy Smith, and Greg Laurie.

Randy was the worship leader when we met underneath the big church and that was the only time I remember it being really sweet and the Holy Spirit being the true focus and not Brant.

When 'Brant's Bible Study' moved up into the big church it turned into this monstrosity.

I was told, nearly ordered, to be 'part' of the choir.

 There was this assigning of people to things.

I did not feel led to be part of that choir for a second, although I certainly loved worshipping.

 Many people thought I was an angel, for real, as the HS was upon me when I sang to Jesus, but I will never forget that someone in the ministry 'rebuked me,' telling me that I was calling attention to myself when I worshiped.

I have to say, they were lucky to have us all doing that for free and backing up Brant.

 Of course that would have been the farthest thing from my mind at the time.

 How we grow up!

But I was horrified to think that I was 'sinnning' in that way.

 I also didn't actually believe it underneath, but you know, when someone tells you something like that it can be jarring or traumatic.

That was not the only time I as rebuked.

There was a girl name Martha who I lived with and she was 'higher up,' in the ministry, and she was continually telling me something was wrong."


"What I want to emphasize is that it was OUR walks in the Lord and not the 'ministry' that caused the Spirit of God to move.

Yes He was given an opportunity to move there, but it was also so sick and clothed in deceit that I think there was just a sourness underneath everything.

I know what it is to be in the ministry and not be 'quite right' with the Lord.

 It is such an easy place to hide, Oh man, no one ever suspects that you might be in sin, and those that you minister with never ask...,at least it was like that at Chuck Jr.'s church.

 It was more like going to a job in some ways, and the competition was what finally did me in there.

All that to say, I later understood to a point what Brant meant when he said that he had gotten to the point where he could 'sin right in front of Jesus and not feel guilt.'

 I wasn't in outright sin but my heart wasn't in the place I felt it should have been.

 That was another reason I got out of the ministry.

I always thought it was so strange that I ended up in the ministry when I wasn't as on fire and when I was, people thought I was unstable or whatever..."


"There were many awesome people, but the ministry was tweaked in a Big way.

God Told me to leave and gave me a scripture in Proverbs.

 I came back one more time.

 I told Brant to look at Ezekiel 44 as that was a sermon I had just heard Frank O'Neil give in Santa Cruz.

Brant ministered on it the next service.

That kind of blew me away.

 There was such an 'awe' of Brant and that secrecy added to that.

When I came back to visit, the awe was gone for me and I think that Brant realized that.

At that time he told me I would be back and part of the ministry again, and of course I knew that was the farthest thing from the truth, he got a phone call at that moment and said, "No, not Lonnie! and for some strange reason I just intuitively knew he was talking about Lonnie being gay, although at that point no one, not even I knew that Brant was gay, or Lonnie.

I had taken my friend Kevin Laubach to a service at the Vineyard and he got really angry.

 It was the night that Lonnie called all the young people to come down.

Kevin's emotion was so strong and it was because he could tell Lonnie was gay, and told me so.

He thought it was a sham.

Again, at that time I didn't think that was true, but between that phone call and Kevin, I was beginning to wonder."


"... it is a strange story.

 People from Calvary were praying for me the whole time I was there I found out after I left.

 I decided on Shekinah over Calvary because of the moving of the Spirit.

 Too bad I had to make a choice and end up in that situation.

It's just sad that the Holy Spirit couldn't have been given a equal footing at Calvary. At least very sad to and for me."


How vividly I recall the discussions I had with my friend Brant Baker.

  Sometimes we'd be hours on end in conversation.  Brant was a faith healer.  God had blessed him with a gift that few will ever have.  He would pray with people and they would be "slain in the Spirit" (as we often call it).  Miracle healings ensued.

  The Apostle Peter had this special gift too.  In any given century, there are usually a few people on the earth who have this special gift in a mighty way, accompanied by exceptional power of the Holy Spirit.

Reflecting on my friendships of a spiritual nature throughout my journey, there are four people who, in my mind, have been true disciples, diligently serving Jesus as their number one priority.  Three are still alive. 

That said, Brant would not be among them.  Without question he had the anointing of God, but I think he was careless with it. 

 Borrowing imagery from an unknown source, I would say that his ministry was likened to a
shooting star.  So brilliant, yet so brief.  God took him home at a young age.

Brant and I used to talk about the presence of Jesus.  He advised me that he was able to tell when Jesus would withdraw His presence. 

 This always fascinated me, and believe me, we spent many hours on that one.  The only instance when I was acutely aware of this, was during a time when I was attending a former church.

  They were in a fund raising campaign, hoping to build a new facility.  At the morning service when
annual pledges were collected, there was something hanging on the alter which could be compared, I
believe, to baal worship.  Little samples of the same thing were handed out to those pledging.

  Suddenly I literally felt Jesus walk out of the sanctuary, and simultaneously felt God's hand lifted off of the church finances.  To date, years later, no progress has been made in meeting the church's financial goals. 

 Let's face it, God will have no other worship than that of God's only begotten son.  That congregation has not flourished, neither are they realizing the miracles that churches all around them are experiencing.

So, after 65 years, I have learned two things.  Having a special anointing from God does not mean that
you've "gotten it all together" in your personal life.  And, secondly, Brant was right.  Jesus certainly does
withdraw His presence when He is not honored.

The Bible more than hints that God longs to be in an intimate relationship with us.  This happens through Jesus.  To continually turn away from what we know is the right thing to do, and that, by the still small voice of the Holy Spirit, will at some point cause Jesus to walk away from anyone.  Yes, Jesus is the servant of all, but to treat Him as a house servant at our beck and call when we find ourselves in need of some assistance – we've missed the point.

  He's long left the building.

Once again, we've got to want Him.  We have to come to the place where what we want most is Jesus being an intimate part of out lives, literally walking and talking with Him.  Sincerely seeking Him will draw Him to us.

He wants to be wanted.  If what we do in our private time, if we invite Him to be with us, and mean it,
Jesus will draw near.

"You will find Me when you seek Me with all you've got"
Jeremiah 29:14


"I would suggest to those who raise the question that some aspect of truth should be hidden—whether it be a leader who does not want his ministry to be tarred with the guilty by association label or a friend who thinks it best to leave some things unsaid—I would simply point both to the Bible and the manner it deals frankly with these issues.

The Bible is brutally honest about its heroes; their triumphs and failures lay side by side in its pages.

If the truth is what sets us free, then we can never suggest anything other than its bald recitation, regardless of where those truths may lead us."


"I am very curious about your connection with Shekinah Fellowship of the 1970s and Brant Baker, especially since I have noticed that you have posted regarding this subject on the Internet at various places.

You seem to know something about it.

Could you explain more?

My wife and I were much involved with it for several years back in the1970s, and we knew quite a few of the principal players at that time.

We still have some contacts with various people who were formally apart of the ministry."

( Editor: David was first introduced to Brant Baker by Lonnie Frisbee at Brant's clothing store on 17th street in Costa Mesa in the late 60's. Brant always said the store was in Newport Beach which was not exactly true. It was right at the border of Newport.)


"First of all, besides the great personal tragedy of Brant Baker himself, the other great tragedy is that Shekinah Fellowship has been deleted from church history.

 It is unconscionable that this has happened.

It has always been, for many years, my wish that someone could tell this story adequately.

After all these years, a small beginning has been made."


"The biggest problem with telling the story of Shekinah is doing the research and conducting the necessary interviews.

 It is very unfortunately the case that many of the principle people involved with Shekinah Fellowship are still very reluctant to talk about their time there.

 And many of them are now scattered across the country."


"Early in the 1970s, I was a senior at California Baptist College in Riverside,California.

 (The college has since changed its name to California Baptist University.)

I just recently was introduced to the Baptism of the Holy Spirit(at Calvary Chapel in Riverside of all places, but that is a story of its own).

 It came to pass that someone invited me to go to the Riverside YMCA.

This was sometime in late 1972 or early 1973, as I recall.

 At that time, Shekinah was holding healing ministry services at that location.

I was entirely blown away by the experience. Having known nothing but a staid Southern Baptist upbringing, to encounter the power of God working in people's lives was unlike anything I had ever seen or heard before.

After that, my involvement would last for several years, from 1973 to around 1977."


"All during those years, Shekinah steadily ran a "Riverside group".

I call it that for lack of a better term.

During most of that time, the Riverside group would be headed up by some Shekinah elder who would make the trip from Long Beach to Riverside to conduct a home Bible study.

At its largest, this Riverside group had around 30 or more fairly regular attenders.

For a time, Brant would, on a weekly basis, hold services in Riverside, at various venues.

 I attended nearly every one.

The first one was the Riverside YMCA.

 Another location would be Arlington Foursquare Church.

 Another was another smaller Foursquare church on 11th Avenue in Riverside.

 And another was, as I recall, a old Presbyterian church somewhere on Magnolia Avenue."


"Many of the people in the Riverside group would make the trip out to Long Beach to attend the services at the Neighborhood Foursquare Church, or even the smaller "afterglows" held at the old "strip mall" location, before it was shutdown.

 Many were involved in the music ministry or ushering.

My wife sometimes would be one of the "word of knowledge" ladies during the services.

At other times, she served in the choir (which was top notch in my opinion).

 Naturally, she got to know several of the primary music ministry people, such as Kelly and Lilly Green, Meg Rafferty, Randy West, and several others.

My wife was also fairly acquainted with Brant's brother Kevin.

 On on occasion, New Year's1977, Kevin had invited us to his home in Belmont Shores, with several other friends from Shekinah. Kevin was a fairly nice fellow, a little vain perhaps,who had some role in the ministry."


"Besides, attending the services, many in the Riverside group would take the time to attend the other services held in other locations in Southern California.

Thus even though many in the "Riverside group" lived in Riverside, and not in Long Beach, they were nearly as heavily involved in Shekinah as anyone else.

 On several occasions, many of the Riverside group would be invited to attend various social functions with the ministers in Long Beach.

One of these occasions was the summer camp held at the Calvary Chapel Conference center up in the San Bernardino mountains.

It lasted for at least two days. I also attended.There I had a very brief meeting with Brant on a balcony and was struck with how shy and frail he seemed."

"By 1977, it was increasingly becoming obvious that the Shekinah ministry was inserious trouble. Sometime during that year, around the summer, my wife and I began to drift away.

We started attending Calvary Chapel (now Harvest) in Riverside."


"...also pointed out that when she first met him, Greg struck her, even then, as a rather shy person, someone not possessing a sociable personality.

 As I said earlier, there may be many understandable reasons for this, his difficult family life, etc.

 But what is interesting is her memory of Brant back when he first started appearing in Riverside.

My wife was still in high school at the time, and Brant was holding services at the Riverside YMCA.

Adjacent to that location was a large vacant lot.

On one occasion, Iola found Brant walking around there by himself.

 She approached him and started up a long conversation with him, as they walked around together in that vacant lot that evening.

She found him very amicable and "warm", to use her word, very much a friendly and open person who cared about others and was interested in them.

 She told me that, in her opinion, only someone like Brant, who wants to reach out and touch people, can be in a healing type ministry.

 She pointed out to me this contrast between how she remembered the young Greg as compared to Brant Baker."


"She also pointed out to me what she considers a turning point in the Shekinah ministry.

 When you think about it, it was an odd event, mostly a nuisance at the time.

During the middle of a Saturday service at the Neighborhood Foursquare Church someone exploded a firecracker or cherrybomb up near the stage, off to one side.

You can imagine the commotion it would have caused, especially considering the services were always very crowded.

Although I later heard mention of this event, I was not at this particular service, but my wife was there.

 She recounted to me how, from the point forwards, it seemed to her that Brant started to drift, to become increaslingly nervous and less accessible to people.

Soon after that incident, Brant adopted the unfortunate practice of having "bodyguards", thus becoming more isolated from ordinary people.

 For her, the explosion was a turning point for Brant."


"I myself never played in Shekinah Fellowship anything that could be called a"big role".

 In fact, you could say I was mostly ignored.

 But because I was around often enough, the Long Beach people knew who I was, but that was about the extent of it.

 There was never any serious move to enlist me for any long term purpose, even though I wanted very much to play some sort of useful part.

On one occasion, I ushered at the series of services held at the erstwhile LongBeach Municiple Auditorium.

 I was way up in the balcony, passing out flyers and then collecting the offering.

On another occasion, I was allowed to usher, but once, at the Neighborhood Foursquare Church, but was later deemed unsuitable.

 On the other hand, my wife was on rather friendly terms with many of the key players, and she was often involved in the music end of things, mostly in the choir.

On many occasions, she was one of "word of knowledge" ladies who percolated through the auditorium praying for people.

And for a short time, she was even close to Kevin Baker. She pointed out to me that Kevin, for a time, worked in his Dad's business and was pretty well off."


Years ago I had the privilege of being a word of knowledge worker in Shekinah Fellowship in Long Beach, California. 

 It didn't take much to impress me about almost anything the Lord was doing in our midst.  It still
doesn't.  There was a song which was called the Shekinah Song.  Lilly Green sang it.  She was not only a
talented vocalist, but her sincerity shone through, and the words have left a life long impression on me.  I had
to e-mail my Shekinah friend Suzie Dixon to be sure I remembered the words correctly.


"For a time, various members of the inner circle surrounding Brant shared residence together with him in a large house in Long Beach.

It was a sort of semi-communal arrangement.

 They shared a kitchen and many of the expenses.

 This made it easier for them to function on limited incomes.

 After all these many years, my wife is unclear on exactly who was there and when, except that it varied over time.

At one time, Randy and Marla West were there, along with Bill and Stacey Jensen, and Kelly and Lilly Green.

She doesn't recall whether Joe and Linda Dallas, or Eric and Claudia were there.

Eric and Claudia were for a longtime Brant's "personal assistants". Unfortunately, we no longer can recollect their last name, and we have no idea what became of them."


"There came the time when Shekinah Fellowship made a transition when it rented the old Fox-Mann theater.

I came there that evening when many of the people involved in Shekinah were working late into the night cleaning up the interior,which had accumulated many years of dust.

 Some of the seating needed repair.

It was a huge effort to get the theater in usable shape.

Why this move to theFox-Mann was made is not entirely clear to us now.

 My wife thinks that the Saturday services had simply outgrown the Neighborhood Foursquare Church.

I vaguely recollect some mention of a disagreement having happened between pastor BillyAdams and Brant.

 But we are not sure on this point, as memories begin to fade after so many years.

Other people might know, but most of them are not talking, unfortunately, as they dis-relish the whole subject."


"Personally, I suspect that pastor Billy Adams must have exercised some sort of beneficial influence on Brant by providing a source of stability and guidance.

When I look at the pictures now of Brant, which you've posted, I am astonished at how young he seemed.

 Advice from an elderly pastor would have been invaluable to Brant, especially being in such a stressful ministry.

Therefore, I suspect that the loss of Billy Adams' influence constituted another unfortunate turning point."


"The point I am trying to make is this: a healing ministry is probably the most perilous ministry there is.

 It is extremely stressful and the pressures are very great.

 It can bring a great deal of attention and celebrity, and consequently the temptations are very great.

There are so many people in the world with incurable and hopeless situations that they will come in droves, desperately looking for help.

For such a young man like Brant to be thrust so quickly into such a stressful and high-profile situation produced huge pressures on him, I amsure.

He was a frail young man, a recovering homosexual, who came from an unhappy family situation, who needed sources of seasoned guidance, truthful support, and wise counsel.

 For him to become increasingly isolated as he did was a recipe for disaster.

It also didn't help that many of the other Shekinah ministers begin to hold him in too much awe, thus becoming increasingly disinclined to correct him when he was wrong.

His being turned into a celebrity came upon him before he was spiritually ready to handle it--and it destroyed him."

"This is one of the valuable lessons that I think can be learned from Shekinah.

 All the members of the Body need each other.

Brant needed everybody else, because it was dangerous, to begin with, for such a young xtian to be thrust so quickly into such a stressful, high-profile ministry.

Brant had a heart for this ministry, but he also had great weaknesses.

 In some ways, he was let down by all of us who unduely idolized him.

I don't say this to excuse his sin, by no means,but I say these things because the Church needs to stop forgetting its mistakes,to stop sweeping them under the rug.

It needs to remember its mistakes, totruthfully enter them into the historical record, so that perhaps it will begin to learn from those mistakes. It has to stop covering things up."


"After all these years, I didn't recollect the death threats against Brant, but I am sure at the time someone probably mentioned it. But it does explain plenty."


"As I was never part of the inner circle, I can only speculate on what factors contributed to Brant's relapse.

For a recovering homosexual to surround himself with young, male body guards was probably one of those contributing factors.

My wife speculates that the Metropolitan Church may have deliberately planted, forlack of a better term, "agent provocateurs" in the church.

If there is the one thing that bothers the "gay agenda" and its proponents, it's when someone"leaves the plantation", so to speak.

 There would certainly be a motive to try to conduct a campaign of sabotage.

But this is all speculation on our part."


"We had a unfortunate soul in our Riverside group who struggled terribly with homosexuality, and he confessed to me personally on this subject.

It was very sad.

There is nothing "gay" (as in gayety) about homosexuality; it's a form of slavery that keeps men trapped in bondage.

Another aspect of the situation, is the fact that we also had other homosexuals who frequented the Riveside services, but later it became apparent to me that they were completely and unrepentantly determined to pursue their own rebellious course.

I some times wonder what roles they were playing behind the scenes."


"Shekinah Fellowship brought together a great number of young men and women.

Naturally, this led to romance and matrimony.

Indeed, Shekinah was where I met and married my wife.

For a time, there was a flurry of marriages at Shekinah.

One of the unfortunate after maths of the ruination of ShekinahFellowship was that a large number of these marriages later ended up in divorce.

Stephen and Teddi Boyd divorced, as did Joe and Linda Dallas, and many others.

Mark Turney, the young deacon who oversaw the Riverside group, eventually divorced from Darlees. Ron and Sue Schloss were divorced not too long after losing a baby to crib death, an event which happened at a dinner my wife and I attended with several of the Riverside Shekinah people.

That was especially sad for us.

Out of all the many marriages, it seemed as if the only ones that survived were mine, Randy and Marla West's, Kelly and Lilly Green's, and Randall and Debbie Slack's."


"Earlier this year I had a strong desire to try to try to track down some of the Shekinah people.

This is difficult to do as they are scattered all over the country now.

The only place where I could start was by looking on the Internet.

My first break was when I stumbled across a web site for a church in Oklahoma.

It turned out that Randall Slack (who was once a drummer for the music ministry)was now pastoring a church in the town of Harrah.

He and Debbie live in Croctaw,Oklahoma.

 I got a hold of his email address and contacted him.

 He turned out to be exceptional in the sense of not being too reluctant to talk about Shekinah,and that he had maintained contacts with several of the people he knew there.

 He explained that Stephan Boyd was now pastoring a Calvary Chapel in Oregon (in the town of Newport, it turns out).

Bill Jensen was working for a book publisher in Oregon. (I have reason to believe this was Multnomah Publishers, located in Sisters, Oregon.)

After that, I was able to locate Randy and Marla West, who are now living near Temecula.

 Later, my wife would have a long phone conversation with Marla, and she was quite talkative and friendly.

And Randy is the same mellow person I knew before.

 Finally, I was able to locate Kelly and LillyGreen.

We rejoiced to find out they were still married, are living some where near Lancaster, California, and they were still involved in the music ministry in a Vineyard church.

 They are currently employed together at a large xtian school.

 Although Lilly would answer our email, I got the feeling that they were not inclined to discuss Shekinah Fellowship.

 They do have several wonderful children, who are grown up now.

One of their sons has a interest in the Mongolian culture and language.

 In fact, he's married a young lady fromMongolia.

On the other hand, my email to Stephan Boyd was never answered.

 It's entirely possible that he doesn't want to be reminded about Shekinah, especially considering that he is pastoring a CC church."


"Although Shekinah Fellowship has been mostly forgotten by men, given up and thrown "down the memory hole", still I some times suspect that God hasn't entirely forgotten about it."


"It seems curiously ironic to me that Shekinah Fellowship, as a legal incorporated entity, managed to survive and was passed on to Tilson Schumate by Trish Trabuco.

 (Editor Correction: "The Fire House" not Shekinah.)

 It's a strange twist of history that, after all these many years,I would be exchanging email with someone ordained by Shekinah Fellowship.

 And I also got a kick out of hearing about your street evangelism ministry, with the power outlet, a PA system, and a spotlight.

Well, I can't think of much more to say.

 Until next time..."


I was very young during the Shekinah Days and I primarily just tagged along with my sister who was in the choir.

We attended for 3 – 4 years is my guess, althought it's so long ago I can't quite remember how long. A long time anyway.

Long after we left Shekinah I continued to go to the Four Square Church under pastor Adams, with Danny and Susie as youth Pastors.

Pastor Adams led a long life serving the Lord to the fullest.

 He was an amazing man, who I believe truly loved the young people at Shekinah, and Brant, long after the ministry had moved on.

While I attended Shekinah I was friends with Terry Brown's kids (he was the choir director for some time).

It was from them that I first began to hear the rumblings of the problems.

They said that Brant had been asked to leave the church.

 In my heart I already sensed the problems, but I was reluctat to accept it as fact.

We would go to Shekinah on Saturdays and I'd go to church at the Four Square on Sunday nights.

One leg on each side of the fence so to speak.

Shekinah is where I found the Lord.

 It is were I began my own Christian routes.

Although I believe Brant fell away from the Lord in his last days I am not 100 percent sure it is how people suspected.

 Yes, it is widely accepted that he died of complications related to Aids, yes we know he struggled in the area of homosexuality, but it is likely he was HIV positive for many years, possibly decades before his death from the complications.

He often mentioned the wild ways of his youth with “love=ins” and such, and from a medical time line it is likely became HIV positure during that era.

I don’t really know, perhaps Brant never actually knew.

 Perhaps the HIV positive thing is what broke up his engagement to Lesa.

Perhaps the diagnosis was the beginning for the spiral.

Perhaps.. he felt he had failed so badly what was the point of remaining with the Lord - he couldn't love him anyway.

Maybe he was mad at God for the diagnosis in the prime of this ministry.

We can all only speculate.

 But I do know that there was a season when God’s hand was so obviously on the ministry and then it was notable when the hand of God had lifted.

It could be seen and felt by all involved.

Many of us stayed long after we should have, out of love for Brant and for what the ministry had meant to us.

 When we finally left, most of us left with a great sadness.

 Knowing it was what God would have us do, but sad for the hurt it caused.

The thing is people, that leaders of God at all ages are prime targets of the devil .

 Young leaders of God are often easy targets as well.

I loved Brant and his family.

I used to sit with Daddy Baker almost every week.

 He cared for me and fed me mints throughout the services.

 I loved the work of the Lord at Shekinah, and refuse to refute all the good/ God that was evidenced there.

I think many of the really involved have scattered in silence becaue from the outside it looks so contradictory.

 How could God have moved in such a powerful way when sin was so rampant in the ministry.

 Is that any different than all ministries.. are we not all sinners in need of a savior?

But the movement was so contraversial, and honestly hard to grasp even being involved in it, so how much harder it is to explain to those who weren't there.

Because Brant fell, that does not negate the work of God.

The ministry afer all was God's ministry .. and when it became more about Brant then I believe that is when he lifted his hand off of the ministry.

 I sill love Brant, and all the other leaders there.. their love for God inspired me!

 I was so thankful to hear the updates from the other blogger who shared the news of Randy and Marla and Kelly and Lilly.

They were powerful forces in my life as well.

 I hope they know that people know it was just a Brant thing for them.

I do.

I have passed on the blog and video sights to my sister.. who too was glad to take the walk down memory lane.

To open a part of her heart and life that has been closed for so long.

Shekinah will ALWAYs have a fond and respected place in my life/heart.

 It was a huge molding influence in my life.

The love of Jesus was there, and for many (dispite what happened in the end) it took root in our lives.

The work of God started there continues on in my life. I appreciate this blog for the opportunity to share things that we've all only carried for many years. 

If you would like to contribute something to this list please use the comments section below to do as such.


 I remember going to Brant Baker services back in 1977.

 I used to load the care to the brim with people I had been sharing the gospel with and bring them. The presence of God was so heavy and thick, that it was unmistakable.

Brant used to line people up on the platform and walk passed them waving his hand in front of them as he passed praying.

One skeptical friend fell to the floor and got up with the biggest smile on His face.

 The term: Slain in the Spirit is the reaction of the flesh to the Spirit of God.

 Those early years were the most exciting times for me.

 I heard that Brant had been mentored by Kathryn Kuhlman.


"Thank you!"


You too can add to this historical record of Brant Baker and Shekinah Fellowship to help construct the puzzle so that all of us can see the whole picture clearly.

Under Brant Baker's watch there was a lot going on behind the scene that no one attending had a clue about.

They somehow pulled it of for quite awhile until a Pastor Sanders found out and went to TBN and told Paul Crouch.

 Paul then pulled the plug on Shekinah Fellowship having television access without calling or telling Brant Baker.

 Years later we find out that Paul may have had some of his own hidden things... 

Under Pastor Tilson Shumate's watch there was total transparency and no hidden things any longer.

Pastor Tilson shut Shekinah Fellowship down and today only this blog exist at the moment.

If you would like to share your memories with us, you can use the comments section below.

OR if the comments section below doesn't work go to our other blog and leave your comments there at:


Or if you just want to say "Hello" to others and let them know that your still around.

Perhaps you can be instrumental in getting some of those who were in Shekinah Fellowship or attended to share their recollections with all of us here?

Thanks from all of us who still care and cherish the memories of an incredible time in our younger lives.

And a grateful and warm heart felt thank you to all who have shared with us!

You are the on going story! 

En' Agape
David Sloane

Sometimes the Holy Spirit has David prophesy through email over those who respond to us.
Many have been blessed as you have read above...

Some Pictures given to us by others:

Senior Pastor Tilson Shumate Shekinah Fellowship
Assistant Pastor David Sloane Shekinah Fellowship
Pastor Tilson Shumate Visiting With Benny Hinn
Assistant Pastor Jim Ewing Shekinah FellowshipJim has the gift of healing as one of his many gifts from the Lord.

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