Coral Ridge Ministries was founded in response to the demand for an intelligent, relevant, uncompromising proclamation of the gospel using media to reach the most people possible for Christ. This founding purpose included reclaiming the Cultural Mandate, equipping the laity for engagement with the world, advancing America’s Christian heritage, and a passion for evangelism all under the Sovereign Lordship of Jesus Christ.
Dr. Robert J. Pacienza, D.Min., is President and CEO of Coral Ridge Ministries (CRM). The Board of CRM named Dr. Pacienza, D.Min. to that role in June 2022. He also serves since 2016 as Senior Pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church (CRPC) in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Pastor Pacienza, who became a believer in Jesus Christ while a teenager at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, was later mentored by the late Dr. D. James Kennedy, the founding pastor of CRPC.
“I am deeply honored and humbled at the opportunity to lead D. James Kennedy Ministries,” said Pacienza, who earned his Master of Divinity at Knox Theological Seminary and his Doctor of Ministry at Westminster Theological Seminary.
“It is a great privilege and awesome responsibility to be part of a ministry that touches lives across our nation with the power of the Gospel and speaks to American culture with the truth of God’s Word,” he said.
In an interview on CRM’s weekly television program, Truths That Transform, Pacienza said his “philosophy of ministry as a pastor is best summed up in the vision statement at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church: we exist to equip Gospel-centered, culture-shaping Christians.”
The author of the new book, The Hope of The World: Christian Cultural Engagement in a Secular Age, Pacienza said the Gospel “moves you to shape culture according to the kingdom of God. We want people watching Truths That Transform to be motivated and informed by the Gospel, to go out and shape culture for the glory of God and for the sake of his kingdom.”
Pastor Pacienza and his wife, Jen, live in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with their children, Preston and Lydia.
D. James Kennedy had a large vision—a vision for making a global impact for Christ. One Sunday evening in 1960 he told 17 people, “You know, I believe we can change the world!”
As he addressed those who were present for the dedication of the new church building in 1974, Dr. Kennedy set the vision for not only the mission of the church, but also for the media ministry that would eventually broadcast his sermons and the Coral Ridge Church services worldwide. He spoke of that vision to his congregation telling them:
It is our prayer, that through this church, the Gospel of Jesus Christ might be radiated through television and radio, motion pictures and cassettes, books and clinics, and by ways yet undreamed of unto the entire world, that the command of Christ to go and proclaim the Gospel to every creature might be fulfilled in our generation.
That year, the radio ministry was launched with a radio outreach on five stations in Michigan, and four years later in 1978, the Coral Ridge worship service was first broadcast on television. Over the next 27 years syndication was to expand to a high point of 675 television stations and 700 radio facilities.
In the 1990’s Dr. Kennedy’s radio program Truths That Transform was on more than 300 radio outlets nationwide and The Coral Ridge Hour was in every major TV market in the United States. Dr. Kennedy became recognized as “one of the leading Christian statesmen of the day.” Dr. Kennedy was quoted in national magazines and newspapers such as the U.S. New and World Report, Christianity Today, The Washington Times, USA Today, The New York Times and The Washington Post. He was also a frequent guest on Morning Joe and appeared with Bill O’Reilly of Fox television.
As the national and international scope of the ministry expanded, Coral Ridge Ministries was incorporated and became the vehicle for the broadcast ministry of Dr. Kennedy.
In 2003, NRB professionals awarded The Coral Ridge Hour the honor of being the “Television Program of the Year” and in 2004 they designated the radio program, Truths That Transform, “Best Radio Teaching Program” of the year. In 2005, Dr. Kennedy, himself, was inducted into the National Religious Broadcasters Hall of Fame.
We pray that Coral Ridge Ministries will continue to faithfully steward this legacy, and that we may serve as a megaphone to the world, proclaiming the Gospel to the ends of the earth. Our motto, as was Dr. Kennedy’s, continues to be: “Excellence in all things, and all things to the glory of God.”