Welcome to First Congregational Church!
Open and Affirming
All are welcome!


Pastor David Frey

Hi, I’m Dave Frey.  Thanks for clicking through the site to learn something about me.

I serve as Pastor here at First Congregational.  After growing up in Chicago Heights, Illinois, and Livonia, Michigan, I completed an undergraduate degree at Wheaton College (IL) and a graduate degree at Bowling Green University (OH), both in History.  I received the Master of Divinity at Duke Divinity School (NC).  I was ordained at the First Baptist Church of Greater Toledo in 1996.  During an extended period of consultation and discernment, I was able to transfer my ordination to the United Church of Christ in 2014.

I’ve lived and worked in the Church all my life.  I was introduced to the local church through the nursery and was baptized a few days before my ninth birthday.  Since ordination, I’ve served as a campus minister, a youth minister, an on-call chaplain, and a settled pastor.  Prior to coming to South Haven, I successively pastored two congregations in the Wisconsin Conference UCC.

I am married.  My wife and I enjoy gardening, hiking, birding, and watching British mysteries.  I am “second father” to her adult son.  We intend to practice creation stewardship and offer hospitality from a modest old house on a good patch of land.   I love stories, songs, poems, thoughtful conversations, learning, Sunday worship, and a good cup of coffee.

I’m here to help facilitate your spiritual growth.  I don’t have a spiritual prescription for you, but I’m willing to be a soul friend as you figure out how God is moving in your life and how you wish to respond.  Please contact me so we can arrange a time to meet.  You are already loved and blessed!

In time with hope,

Pastor Dave

Music Directors Diane & Lisa Van Deurzen-Otey

Diane and Lisa joined First Congregational Church of South Haven as Co-Music Directors in the fall of 2021.  Their goal is to choose music which supports Pastor Dave’s themes and messages for Sunday Worship.  They also hope that the music inspires you and makes you feel good.

Lisa is originally from Oregon and Diane is from Wisconsin, but they lived in Tucson, AZ for the last 30 years.  They were Music Directors at St. Francis In the Foothills in Tucson UMC for the last 28 years. Diane and Lisa also worked at The Good Shepherd UCC in Sahuarita, AZ for the last 6 years. They have been fortunate to have traveled the world, performing at Jazz & Blues Festivals and venues in Switzerland, France, Germany, Belgium, Spain, The Netherlands, Canada, Mexico, and Australia.

Diane and Lisa now live in St. Joe and are so happy to be part of the First Congregational family in South Haven