David Stabenfeldt — Pastor Dave — calls himself  "a Midwesterner at heart". Born and raised in Evansville , Indiana, and earning his  degree at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, he describes it as a “great place to evolve into young adulthood.” St. Louis also holds a special place in his heart, because there he met his wife Pam and graduated from Eden Theological Seminary. Pastoral life began in Burlington, Iowa at First UCC. From there, they set sail down the Mississippi River, to Collinsville, Illinois and St. John Evangelical UCC.

Like so many others from the Midwest, he and his wife, Pam, found themselves being called west to Bakersfield. The church’s welcoming and energetic spirit drew them here, far from their Midwestern roots. They are excited about this extravagantly welcoming congregation!  Since arriving in June 2009, they have happily joined with people who are seeking to live the UCC motto, “No matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here.

Life,” he says,  “is filled with the unexpected.” Having served a large congregation for a number of years, he didn’t really know what to expect in saying yes to a church of 250 members. To his surprise and delight ... the members of First Congregational UCC are engaged in the local community in significant and caring ways, far beyond what their numbers might indicate. Mission and worship are the hallmarks of this growing and thriving congregation.

First Congregational is a good size — small enough so that people know your name and large enough to offer the variety of benefits of a larger congregation.  David brings strengths in preaching and worship leadership. Music, too, is central to our worship. Our children’s program, both Sunday morning and evening, is a place of nurture and faith development.

If you like meaningful involvement, join us in one of our mission endeavors. Here are a couple of possibilities: twice a month we’re at the Bakersfield Homeless Shelter, where we offer a meal and food for the spirit, or, if you prefer, pick up your hammer and work with us at Habitat.

Curious about what would draw a Midwesterner to Bakersfield? Interested in finding a place of welcome and a community aspiring to follow Christ Jesus? Then stop by his office or for worship on Sunday morning. He's always glad to meet a fellow traveler on life’s byways.


Music director Amanda Isaac lives up to the moniker “crazy music lady” and loves it. She spent most of her formative years in UCC churches, including First Congregational, returning to Bakersfield after college.

Amanda teaches music for three schools in the Norris School District. Her BA and MA in music are from CSU Chico with a Kodály Certificate from McNeese State University. Amanda joined the staff of FCC in August 2009. A wide variety of diverse music, threaded by the Spirit, has enriched her spiritually and professionally; her goal is to share that wide vision of the sacred with the First Congregational community.


Elizabeth Cervantes brings so much more than her renowned keyboard skills with her to FCC-UCC! Her wealth of professional experience includes seven churches, four different colleges/universities, both the Bakersfield Master Chorale and the Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra, and our very own Dukes Concert Series. She is varied, versatile, and vivacious and has already participated in her first Worship Design Group meeting. Liz agrees that the Spirit has guided her and FCC-UCC onto a common path and looks forward to what lies ahead.


Jolie Roberson was born and raised in Bakersfield, CA, and obtained a BA in Cinema and Television Arts, Multimedia Production from Cal State Northridge. Before deciding to return to Bakersfield, she worked for two years on The Ellen DeGeneres Show as a Graphic Designer. Jolie continues pursuing her love of the arts by working as a freelance graphic designer, and the Facility Director of The Empty Space Theater. 


Myetta Beavers was born and raised in Bakersfield, CA and has one adult son in college. She received MA in Early Childhood Education from CSU-Bakersfield. She began volunteer work with preschool children in the 9th grade at Compassion Christian Center and now serves as the Director of the Nursery and Early Childhood Program during church services. Since 1995 Myetta has worked in the Child Development field, first as an aide and teacher’s assistant, then as a 2-year-old teacher for six years, and later teaching preschool, obtaining a Child Development Director’s Permit in 2006. She loves to dance, read to children, and occasionally sing (to children only).

No matter who you are, or where you are on life's journey, you're welcome here...

First Congregational Church   |   5 Real Road, Bakersfield, CA 93309   |   facebook link Find us on Facebook   |  UCC Link