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David W. Pendergrass, Ph.D.

Senior Pastor

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Twitter: @DrDPendergrass

Dr. Pendergrass is a graduate of Gardner-Webb University (B.A: Christian Studies; Music), the School of Divinity at Gardner-Webb University (M.Div.: Biblical Studies with Counseling), and Baylor University (PhD: Historical Theology; Biblical Backgrounds/New Testament). Dr. Pendergrass has worked at various churches in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas. He has served as a Hospice Chaplain, leadership and organizational consultant, and counselor for around twenty years. He is happily married to Elaine (18 years) and has two awesome kids: Hayden (13) and Julia (10).

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Paul Porter

Pastor to Youth and College

Facebook: paul.porter.908

Paul Porter was born and raised in Nacogdoches, TX. He loved to play the game of baseball growing up and was recruited to play college baseball. During his senior year of high school, he realized that life was not about himself but another person: Jesus. He realized that Jesus was Lord, repented from his sins, and received God's forgiveness that is only in God the Son: Jesus. He went off to college to play baseball and majored in Exercise Sports Science. During his freshman year of college, God rocked his world. He surrendered his baseball career and was left searching for his calling. After seeking and praying, he was compelled to go into the vocational ministry. He graduated from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (Belton, TX) with a Bachelor's of Arts in Christian Ministry with a minor in Biblical Languages. He has been part of various ministries: overseas, prison, camp, and students. He was a youth ministry intern and pastor at a few churches in Central Texas. He joined the FCC Lawrence staff on August 28, 2017. He is here to make disciples and to teach disciples to make disciples. He loves to read literature regarding the Christian worldview, watching college football and Major League Baseball, and enjoys building relationships with people.

Instagram Username: paul_the_baptist

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Elaine W. Pendergrass

Pastor to Children

Twitter: @ewpendy

Elaine Pendergrass joined the FCC Staff in January 2017. She comes with a wealth of knowledge about teaching and learning, child development, and children's discipleship. Elaine holds a BS. in Elementary Studies and an M.A. in School Administration, both from Gardner-Webb University (Boiling Springs, NC). She has devoted about half of her career to education and the other half to Children's Ministry. She has served both in public and private schools as an Elementary teacher, Instructional Specialist, Preschool Director, and Head of School. She has also served as a Children's Minister at two large churches in Houston, Texas (Jersey Village Baptist Church and First Methodist Houston). Elaine is passionate about loving children, making disciples, and equipping families to raise their children in faith. Elaine and her husband David have been happily married for 17 years. They have two beautiful children, Hayden (12) and Julia (9).

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Matthew Mulnix

Modern Worship Leader


Matthew Mulnix is a graduate of Missouri State University (B.S. Entertainment Management/Marketing). While attending college, Matthew held leadership positions at BSU,  Phillipsburg Presbyterian, and River Bluff Fellowship. Matthew has been involved in worship music for ten years, beginning in high school at his hometown church, FCC of Bethany, MO. Matthew was raised in Bethany, Missouri, by his parents Allan and Corinna. Allan is a farmer/rancher, while Corinna is a retired elementary school teacher. Matthew’s sister, Allison, is currently a nursing student at William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri. Matthew is honored to serve FCC Lawrence in worship through song as part of the weekly Modern Service.

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Lisa Hoag

Business Administrator


Lisa attended the University of Kansas and was born and raised in Lawrence.  She is a long time member of First Christian and has worked at the church for over 20 years and in the accounting field for over 30. She and her husband Chuck have 4 wonderful children, one grandson and a very spoiled dog named Lily.

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Maddie Markley


Maddie is a graduate of KU and a native Kansan. She has a variety of experience serving in the church and is excited to be a part of the FCC team. After living in Seattle for a time, she and her husband Ben have moved home to be closer to family. Maddie enjoys running, hiking, reading, and drinking coffee.

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Tammie Caffee

Adult Discipleship Pastor


Tammie Caffee is a professional educator with more than thirty years experience in traditional and non-traditional educational environments. Her students have come from all ages and backgrounds in both domestic and international locations. Married to her high school sweetheart for nearly forty years, she and her husband Dan lived as expatriate Americans in four different Muslim countries for fifteen years. During her time overseas, she held positions in both American and international schools and was involved in women’s ministry and mentoring programs. Tammie and Dan have two wonderful sons, two beautiful daughters-in-law, and six precious grandchildren. After graduating from high school more years ago than she cares to admit, Tammie received a BA in English. She also holds an MA in Curriculum and Instruction from Colorado Christian University.

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Marita Elliott

Care and Connections Pastor


Marita Elliott  first came to FCC in 1984 after she and her husband, Sam Elliott (former Elder, now deceased), moved to Lawrence in 1983.  They attended and participated regularly, then moved away in 1990, only to return in 2010. Sam passed away in December, 2015.  They were married 33 years and shared 6 children, 11 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren. Since returning, Marita became involved in teaching Sunday School, the Care Ministry Team, the Worship Ministry Team and became an Elder. “I'm excited knowing that Christ is our Sovereign Shepherd and He is in complete control of our church - we are in His hands, and only through prayer will we come together tighter."


David Nanne

Outreach Pastor


David Nanne grew up on a farm in Pakeham, Ontario. After marriage to Merry, he moved to Alaska. Since then, as they pursue the expanse of God's Kingdom, God has moved them to Arizona for training, and now to Lawrence. David and Merry have been blessed with two beautiful children, Eleanor and Naomi. David is currently working at a local engineering company, and is eagerly praying towards and excited to see how God's Kingdom prevails  transforming those in Lawrence and around the world. He enjoys cycling, the early mornings, and enjoying the splendid creation around us.


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Julie Hafenstine

The Giving Tree, Director


Julie Hafenstine is a graduate of Washburn University (B.S. Elementary Education/Early Childhood Emphasis). She has worked in the Early Childhood field for over 12 years. She has been happily married to her husband, Mark for 23 years.  They have 2 children, Brianna (19) and Ryan (16). She enjoys spending time with her family and 2 dogs, Teddy and Maggie. Julie is blessed to serve as Director of The Giving Tree Preschool.

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DeAnna Parsons

The Giving Tree, Lead Teacher


We are so happy to welcome Ms. DeAnna to The Giving Tree this school year! DeAnna has been working with small children in many capacities for over 18 years. She has a BS degree in Early Childhood Education from Kennesaw State University. She has been married to her husband, Bob, for 21 years. She and her husband have 4 fun-loving girls they greatly enjoy. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends and is excited to join the Giving Tree family.

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Donna Carlson

The Giving Tree, Lead Teacher


Ms. Donna has been working in education for the past 12 years, 9 of which have been at The Giving Tree Preschool. She graduated with a BS degree in Communication from Baker University and worked for non-profits prior to being a stay-at-home mom while her kids were little.  Donna and her husband, Steve, have 3 kids; two sons and a daughter in the middle. Donna’s greatest joy is watching her preschoolers grow academically, socially and spiritually in the loving and playful setting of The Giving Tree Preschool, the happiest place on the planet.

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Mikayla Swart

The Giving Tree, Lead Teacher


Mikayla started her career working with children while attending Eastern New Mexico University. She taught at preschools in New Mexico and Kansas before taking a 9 year break to raise her three children, all GT Alumni. She is joining us for her second year at The Giving Tree. When not at the happiest place on the planet, Ms. Mikayla enjoys spending time with her husband Greg, and their beautiful children.

First Christian Church exists to make disciples of Jesus. To make disciples of Jesus, First Christian’s ministries are committed to teaching disciples to obey everything that Jesus commanded (Matt. 28:19), expressed by Gather, Grow, Go. We Gather to worship and care for our community; we Grow to be like Jesus; we Go to share the gospel and serve the world.

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