Who We Are
Who We Are
Our Mission
Equipping people to follow Jesus in their everyday lives.
Our Vision
Break Down Barriers
Build Up People
Be a Light for Our City

Our Mission

Equipping people to follow Jesus in their everyday lives.

Our Vision

Break down barriers. Build up people. Be a light for our city.

Our Beliefs

  • We affirm the centrality of the Word of God.
  • We affirm the necessity of the new birth in Christ.
  • We affirm a commitment to the whole mission of the church.
  • We affirm the church as a fellowship of believers.
  • We affirm conscious dependence on the Holy Spirit.
  • We affirm the reality of freedom in Christ.
FCC is part of the Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC) denomination. To read more about ECC, visit their website at covchurch.org.

Our Values


FCC is a safe place to explore what is true about God, our world, and our lives.


FCC is a place to connect meaningfully with God and with others.


FCC is a place where God transforms lives and people are sent out to make a difference in the world.


FCC is a place where the love, joy, freedom, and hope we have in Christ are celebrated.

Our History


FCC is born when a group of fourteen Swedish Immigrants sign a charter establishing the "Swedish Emmanuel Covenant Churchof Oakland."


FCC launches its youth ministry, as well as children's outreach programs in Oakland,Berkeley, and Alameda.


FCC acquires a larger church facility after primarily meeting in homes.


FCC sends out its first overseas missionaries.


FCC begins holding two English-speaking services per month to better connect with the younger generation. Until this point, services had been held exclusively in Swedish.


FCC purchases a new church building on 5th Ave. in Oakland, where services would beheld for the next thirty years.

1940s & 1950s

FCC ministers to WWII servicemen, sends out additional overseas missionaries, and plants Hillside Covenant Church in Walnut Creek.


FCC transitions to its present-day facility at 4000 Redwood Road, launches Treehouse Preschool, and launches the annual Kids Camp ministry. Oakland's Harbor House is founded by an FCC teacher.

1980s & 1990s

FCC continues to foster outreach to Oakland and grow in multi-ethnic ministry. FCC plants Creekside Community Church in San Leandro, partners with Iglesia del Pacto Bethel, andlaunches Camp Cov.Pastor Nancy joins the staff in 1997.

Early 2000s

FCC members launch Faith Network (now Children Rising) and Little Flock Children's Home. Pastor Danny and Pastor Marco join the staff in2002 and 2004, respectively. First Cambodian Baptist Church merges with FCC in 2005, and Pastor Chamron joins staff.


FCC members launch New Day for Children.


FCC calls Pastor Marco to serve as Lead Pastor.


FCC launches its Vision Team and periodicCovenant Cafe events. Pastor Sarah joins the staff.


FCC renews its Mission Statement: Equipping people to follow Jesus in their everyday lives.


FCC continues to navigate the challenges of the COVID-19 Pandemic and grow in online/virtual ministry.

Our Staff Team
Marco was born in San Antonio, Texas and was raised as a pastor's kid in a spanish-speaking church. Pastor Marco is the preaching pastor in our Sunday services and guides the overall vision and direction of the church. Marco holds a B.A. in Pastoral Studies from Patten University and a M.Div from Fuller Seminary. He and Nicole are the parents of two young children.
Pastor Marco Ambriz
Lead Pastor
Danny oversees all children ministries including our summer Kids Camp. Danny grew up in Oakland and attended Thornhill Elementary, Montera Junior High and Skyline High School. He came to faith in Jesus through the high school ministry here at First Covenant in 1990. He attended UC Santa Barbara and Fuller Seminary. He and Bethany have two young children.
Pastor Danny Fitelson
Children & Families Pastor
Nancy was born and raised in Chicago. Nancy oversees the church's pastoral care. Nancy is committed to making First Covenant a place of healing where people can be "safe and real." Nancy holds a B.S. and a Masters in Education. Nancy did further studies at North Park Theological Seminary. Nancy and her husband Andy are the parents of two grown daughters.
Pastor Nancy Lewis
Congregational Care Pastor
Sarah was born and raised in Ohio before beginning her education and journey in ministry in Chicago, IL. Sarah has a B.A. in Youth Ministry and an M.Div from North Park Theological Seminary. She joined the FCC staff in 2017 and currently oversees our High School and Middle School ministries. She and her husband Brad have two young children.
Pastor Sarah Henry
Youth Pastor
Chamron was raised in Cambodia and is a survivor of the horrors of the Khmer Rouge. Along with his ministry to the wider congregation, Chamron leads a Khmer-language worship service each Sunday. Chamron is also the founder and director of Vision for Cambodia. His passion is in developing leaders and churches in Cambodia. Chamron studied at Golden Gate Seminary. He and Lekun have two grown sons and a daughter at home.
Pastor Chamron Phal
Associate Pastor
Rhonda was born and raised in Alameda. She works with resourcing and coordinating all of our worship services and also assists with directing our High School Ministry. Rhonda has a Bachelors of Arts in Communication from San Francisco State University. She and her husband Johnathan were married in 2014.
Rhonda Ramos
Director of Hospitality & Worship Experience
Pam Grove has a varied musical background that includes providing church music, wedding music, and her love of playing handbells. She sang and assistant directed in school choirs and musicals in her early years, and earned an auditioned spot in the original touring pit chorus of Jesus Christ Superstar (with Ted Neeley). She has been a founding ringer in three community/professional handbell ensembles, including the critically acclaimed Sonos (which performed with the Kronos Quartet, twice on Garrison Keillor's A Prairie Home Companion, and recorded at George Lucas' Skywalker Ranch), and her current group Velocity. As a handbell enthusiast, she has conducted at the 2018 International Handbell Symposium in Australia, performed at the 2012 International Handbell Symposium in the United Kingdom, and has been a handbell director at five Bay Area churches, including First Covenant. She is also the current president of the Handbell Musicians of America, the national organization dedicated to advancing the art of handbell/handchime ringing. As a singer, pianist and handbell ringer, she has performed at over 140 weddings. Pam worked for the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) and went back to college to earn her Bachelor of Music degree in handbells from Mills College in 2007. She retired from MTC as a Senior Public Information Officer in January of 2018, and she still holds a California court reporting license. As a retiree, she hopes to serve God more with her talents at church.
Pam Grove
Choir Director
Shelley is a fourth generation First Covenanter born in Oakland and raised in the East Bay. She has degrees from UC Berkeley and Fuller Seminary and is happy to be able to serve her church family in the office.
Photo Coming Soon
Shelley Holst
Office Administrator & Facilities Manager
Clare was born and raised in Castro Valley. FCC has been her church home for the past few years and she has filled various roles in office support and Kids Camp. She is excited to be a part of the FCC staff. Clare has a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from UCLA.
Clare Loux
Administrative Assistant to the Lead Pastor
Arlyn, born and raised in the Philippines. Having a background in show business, they partner with Filipino churches to produce concerts and assisting in community projects. Arlyn and Jonathan are parents to two grown children and two children at home.
Arlyn Ranillo
Nina was born and raised in New Jersey, and moved to CA over 30 years ago. She spent over 18 years in corporate retail running national businesses in the home furnishings sector.  She most recently ran her own business locally as a Professional Organizer. Nina and her family joined FCC after her two sons were introduced to the Youth Groups here.
Nina Johnson
Business Administrator
Our Location
First Covenant Church
4000 Redwood Rd., Oakland, CA 94619
Phone Number
(510) 531-5244
Office Hours
9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Tuesday - Friday
Our Location
First Covenant Church
4000 Redwood Rd., Oakland, CA 94619
Phone Number
(510) 531-5244
Office Hours
9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Tuesday - Friday