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College opens Legacy Center

Two-story building in The Master’s College serves as welcoming area and tribute to current president

Posted: April 21, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: April 21, 2012 1:55 a.m.

Mark Tatlock, The Master’s College executive vice president and provost, left, and Sharon Staats, executive assistant to the president, tour The Legacy Center at the school in Santa Clarita.


A modest dirt pad between The Master's College campus library and executive offices sat for nearly 30 years untouched and unimproved until 2010.

That year, the campus' board of directors had plans to turn this area into a welcome center and tribute to college President John MacArthur.

In August 2010, the behind-the-scenes plans for the Legacy Center were revealed, and construction began.

Today, the Legacy Center offers the campus a welcome place for visitors, prospective students and their families and is also a gift commemorating the college's history and the impact of MacArthur's 27-year tenure.

Telling two stories

The Legacy Center, which opened in October, now adjoins the library and Rutherford Hall, the building housing the executive offices. Both buildings underwent interior and exterior renovations to match the newly constructed California craftsman-style Legacy Center, a two-story building offering exhibits outlining the college's rich 85-year history and MacArthur's far-reaching effect on the college and the world.

"It is a presidential-library concept," Executive Vice President Mark Tatlock said. "The bottom floor tells the history of the school, and the top floor tells the story of John MacArthur and his leadership bringing the past and the future of the college together."

The building offers a self-guided approach through both levels. Beginning on one side, the first floor exhibits show the start of the college in 1927 in East Los Angeles, its relocation to Santa Clarita, early photos of the campus and its name change from Los Angeles Baptist College to The Master's College in 1985.

"If you follow the time line, you get a sense of the vision the faculty and leaders had for the school then," Tatlock said. "It offers a richer sense of heritage for the school, which is why it is named the Legacy Center."

The second floor, which is called the MacArthur collection, tells the story of MacArthur, beginning with his role as pastor to Grace Community Church in the San Fernando Valley, and contains first editions of every book MacArthur has written, details of The Master's graduate school and international academy, and pieces from his radio broadcast ministry "Grace to You," launched in 1978.

A special gift

The idea for the Legacy Center began as a secret gift for MacArthur's 25th anniversary as president to honor his achievements and contributions, as well as a way to offer a warm welcome to visitors of the college.

As plans came together, exhibits were assembled and books were collected telling a long story of MacArthur's dedication to serving God and teaching others.

"We wanted to honor his 25 years," said Sharon Staats, executive assistant to the president. "It is very personal. We kept in mind how we could best portray a gift like this for him."

The result became a tribute that honors MacArthur and his immense influence on the world.

The Master's Academy International has 15 member schools and 25 affiliate schools worldwide. The study Bible he authored is translated into seven languages, and the recordings of his radio ministry are broadcast around the world nearly 24 hours a day.

"John MacArthur is a very humble gentleman," Tatlock said. "We couldn't have done anything more meaningful for him. It was fulfilling to do something that honored John and honored the Lord in telling the story of what God has done all these years through the lives of the people that have been a part of the college."



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