The staff at First Church is called to serve us as we honor God by becoming and making fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ. We hope you'll enjoy reading a little bit about them here. Please feel free to stop in the office to say "hello!" and introduce yourself.
Lead Pastor: Pastor Ben Kappers
Pastor Ben has been pastor here since June of 2013. He is married to Melanie, and they have five children: Caleb, Grace, Anna, Andrew, and Luke. Pastor Ben graduated from Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, MS in 2011. Currently, Pastor Ben is pursuing his Doctor of Ministry degree from Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, FL. Pastor Ben and Melanie enjoy playing games and having people in their home. Pastor Ben also enjoys watching the Cubs, keeping up on current events, and playing fantasy football.
Pastor Ben's desire is that the Lord would use him to impart to Christ's church a deeper love for and obedience to God through his ministry.
Assistant Pastor: Pastor John Rogers
Pastor John Rogers joined our staff in June of 2019. He and his wife, Julia, have three children: Hunter, Lily, and William. Pastor John grew up in Tallahassee, FL and is an avid Florida State fan. Upon graduating, he entered the Army an as officer and was deployed.
Pastor John has served in various ministry contexts, but especially loves seeing young adults and young families get excited about Jesus, grow together as couples and as a family, and figure out creative ways to connect their non-Christian friends to Jesus. He's an avid sports fan, loves wrestling his two boys, and buying his daughter whatever she wants. Pastor John is planting Grace Church PCA in Crown Point, IN.
Administrator: Mark Emanuelson
Mark was born and raised in Burnsville, Minnesota, just south of the Twin Cities. He graduated from Bethel University in St. Paul with a Communications degree and has had a wide variety of occupational opportunities. Those opportunities range from drafting in an engineering firm to electrical contracting to church administration to Environment of Care Director at a skilled nursing facility and now back to church administration. Mark is married to his wife, Diane, and together they have 4 grown boys, 2 daughter-in-law’s and 6 grandchildren. Mark enjoys the outdoors, woodworking, yardwork and gardening. Mark’s favorite verse is Philippians 2:3 “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.”
Director of Music: Cheryl Cassity
Cheryl is a real treat for everyone at First Church, members and visitors alike. She not only assists in worship by playing the organ and piano, but also facilitates our choirs, praise teams, and special music.
Children's Ministry Coordinator: Kersten Kazen
Kersten has shown through her experience and her passion for children's ministry that she will fill this role beautifully. She will be acting as a liason between all the groups that serve First Church Kids, and the kids of our community. This will include Sunday School, VBS, and the development of a mid-week children's discipleship opportunity. Kersten is also part of the Christian Instruction Task Force. May God bless her in this new role.
Media Specialist: Dustin Hibbler
Dustin joined our staff August of 2019. He and his wife, Erin, moved to Lansing from Michigan, where they both grew up. Dustin films sermons on Sunday, takes photos and videos at church events, posts to churches' social media, and maintains our website.
Pastoral Intern: Ken Wojnarowski
Ken has been a member here since 2016. He graduated from Trinity Christian College with a Bachelor's degree in Theology and a minor in Criminal Justice. He is currently attending Mid-America Reformed Seminary. He and his wife, Sarah, are from the Orland Park/Mokena area. They married in 2018. Ken enjoys drinking coffee, video filming/editing, hiking, making walking sticks, playing the board game Risk, and telling people about how King Josiah was a great King in Israel's history. Ken is a die-hard Univeristy of Michigan fan.
Ken serves as First Church's Pastoral Intern. He works with the Jr. High/Sr. High Youth, with the Adult Spiritual Development Team, and assists the church in other areas of need.