Pictured here (July 2013) are cofounders Scott Crawford & Larry Rosenbaum. Scott at 73 is still preaching the Gospel on the streets while Larry, long time SOS director is still at the helm at 65.
The Men Who Started SOS
The first SOS‑San Francisco outreach in l980 was the combined effort of several churches and ministries in Northern California. After this outreach, we felt that God was directing us to establish an ongoing ministry to San Francisco. At the time, the SOS steering committee consisted of twelve people:
1. Ron Woodruff Ron and Wayne Conley founded Shama Sound Ministries, Inc., which became the corporation under which SOS Ministries operated. Ron and Wayne purchased a large PA system and began doing evangelistic concerts in the East Bay. In 1981, Ron moved to San Francisco to work with me full‑time in SOS Ministries. Ron met his wife Jennifer at our 1984 outreach, and she is now the SOS secretary. Together, Ron and I oversee the work of SOS Ministries. We are very different in our gifts and temperament. Each of us tends to be strong in areas where the other is weak. Over the past eight years, we have gone through many struggles learning to work together, but God has used these to make us an effective team.
2. Michael Brodeur Michael grew up in the Castro district of San Francisco as a “hippie child.” Several years after he was saved, he came to San Francisco with a team from Gospel Outreach of Eureka, California. He worked with Ron and me organizing outreaches for several years before SOS Ministries was started. Michael is now pastor of Promised Land Fellowship in San Francisco and continues to work with SOS. Michael met his wife Diane at our first SOS‑San Francisco outreach.
3. & 4. Darrell Walker & Brad Byrum Darrell and Brad were the leaders of Agape, Inc., a dynamic street ministry in San Francisco, affiliated with the Assemblies of God. They preached on the streets of San Francisco almost every day for several years. They also did a lot of outreach in the Tenderloin (skid row) district of San Francisco and operated the Candle coffeehouse (started by David Wilkerson) for many years. Darrell was killed in a car accident after our 1981 summer outreach. After that, Agape, Inc. became Agape Fellowship, a church fellowship for inner city people in San Francisco. In 1985, Brad took a leave of absence from ministry to go to school and Ron Woodruff became pastor of Agape Fellowship.
5. Gary Goodell Gary was pastor of Faith Fellowship Foursquare Church in Oakland for many years before leaving in 1985 to pastor a Foursquare Church in southern California. Gary has a real heart for street ministry and greatly helped us by providing wise counsel and in getting pastors involved with us.
6. Randy Sager Randy was founder and pastor of the Fellowship of the Living God, Castro Valley. Randy taught us about the importance of praise and worship in evangelism. The worship group from his church led many of our worship rallies. The Fellowship has reorganized as the New Life Christian Church and the pastor, Dennis McNally, has been involved with SOS for several years.
7. Doug Shearer Doug is founder of TAV Evangelical Ministries and co‑pastor of New Hope Christian Fellowship in Sacramento. Doug has a tremendous ability to motivate Christians to witness for Christ. He regularly brings teams of Christians to San Francisco and the New Hope worship group leads worship at many of our rallies. TAV Ministries grew out of relationships that began in SOS. TAV is a Jewish outreach that has established dialogues between top Jewish and evangelical Christian leaders and joint Jewish‑Christian worship services which have been a powerful witness for Christ in the Jewish community. Doug is still very much involved with SOS Ministries.
8. Richard Paradise In 1980, Richard was the pastor of the Russian River Christian Fellowship in Guerneville, CA. At the time, he brought teams from his church to witness with us in San Francisco. Since then, Richard has been involved as Director of Proclamation at New Hope Christian Fellowship, Sacramento. He continues to work with SOS.
9. Scott Crawford Scott has been an evangelist for many years, working with Resurrection City, a church founded by Mario Murillo in Berkeley. As Scott traveled around the country preaching, he met many other street preachers. Every year he went to New Orleans to witness at the Mardi Gras. A number of other Christians also went there, and they started a joint outreach. Scott`s experiences there gave him the idea for a week‑long outreach to San Francisco, and he also gave us the name SOS‑San Francisco. Scott also started a Christian house in San Francisco where Ron Woodruff, Michael Brodeur and I lived, which became the first headquarters for SOS Ministries. Scott is now the director of Evangelism for Jesus Ministries in Colby, KS, and continues to work with SOS Ministries.
10. Gary Lukas Gary is pastor of North Beach Christian Fellowship, a church located on Broadway Street, a tourist area that features topless bars, male strippers, and female impersonators. Gary has preached on that street faithfully for seven years, in addition to witnessing door‑to‑door, and at street fairs and parades in San Francisco. Gary is currently doing street outreach in Texas.
11. Dan Russell Dan was a pastor at Calvary Community Church in San Jose. He helped us organize our first SOS outreach and led a Youth With a Mission base in San Francisco for about a year. Dan is currently working with Youth With a Mission in Colorado.
12. Larry Rosenbaum Everyone else was involved in another ministry besides SOS, so I ended up being the director of SOS Ministries, largely because I had the time to give to it.