Campus Ministry welcomes Reverend Scott Adams


Ashley Cope

Reverend Scott Adams speaking during University Chapel, Thursdays at 11:25 a.m.

Ashley Cope, Reporter

As people sat down in Samuelson Chapel on Thursday, Sept. 8,  a new face appeared at the pulpit, Reverend Scott Adams. Adams was hired at California Lutheran University after a lengthy process to look for a permanent member of the church community on campus as a replacement for the interim pastor Mark Holmerud. 

“Reverend Adams really surfaced from the feedback of that search committee and the experiences of the campus community as the person we wanted to call to be the University Pastor now and the years to come,” Vice President of Mission & Identity Melissa Maxwell-Doherty said. 

Adams moved across the country from Baltimore, Maryland, where he was a community leader, senior pastor at the United Church of Christ and worked at Loyola University Maryland. Taking this opportunity to preach in Campus Ministry meant leaving behind his family for the year so his son could finish his senior year of high school, which was a struggle for Adams. 

“There is a scripture–when your soul is anchored, storms and winds and trials and tribulations and challenges can come, but when you are anchored you have the ability to weather the storm, and that’s how I do it,” Adams said.

Adams said the Cal Lutheran community has been welcoming and caring through this difficult transition without his family. 

“During New Student Orientation we did a breakfast with Campus Ministry, before the You Got Served project,” Senior Emma Janzen, president of Lord of Life, said. “It was really fun to see him interacting with all the new students as well as a lot of returning students involved.”

Adams said he realized his calling was in ministry later in life– when he was a student in a Master’s Program for Computer programming. As he was walking down a local bookstore’s aisle towards the technology section, he felt drawn to the history and religion textbook, where he picked up a study Bible.

“Something on the inside of me–didn’t hear an auditory voice–but something on the inside of me, this inspiration, this passion, said, ‘this is where you need to be,’” Adams said. 

Growing up Adams was never forced to go to church but his grandparents founded Zion Baptist Church in Baltimore City. 

“He is super energized in Chapel, so it’s kinda fun to watch him. He does a lot of call and response, like he will say ‘will somebody say amen’ then everyone says ‘amen’,” Janzen said. 

Adams uses the fundamental principles of Paul Tillich, a Lutheran Theologian, one being, “to have the courage to be” in his ministry. 

“What I try to press into is for students, faculty, staff, administration and everybody I met to have that courage to be who they are authentically and unapologetically,” Adams said. 

This was definitely seen in the chapel on Thursday as Adams welcomed Latinx Heritage Month to campus during his service, as well as in other upcoming events including Paletas on the Patio on Thursday, Sept. 29, and a mariachi band coming to play during Chapel on Oct. 6. 

Adams is also involved on campus and Maxwell-Doherty describes him as having the “gift of presence” in the community, through attending events like New Student Orientation, sporting games and practices and his sermons during Chapel Hour on Thursdays. 

“Saturday was really special, I had an opportunity to serve as the chaplain/pastor for the football team for their first home game. I was out on the field and was able to pray with the coaching staff and share a very quick message in the locker room with the team,” Adams said. 

Rev. Adams has services during Chapel Hour, Thursdays from 11:15 a.m. to noon.