Fred De Jong, Lead Pastor
Pastor Fred joined the Crown Point family as lead pastor in April of 2020. Fred and Ingrid have spent their adult lives doing ministry among people at three churches in the suburban Chicagoland area, and are excited to bring their relational energy to the mission here.
Fred’s passion is to connect the church to her community, developing ministries and leaders that draw people to Christ, then deeper in appreciation and service for Him. He has provided leadership to several regional and international mission efforts, and continues to support church planting efforts in Myanmar (Burma).
Fred loves to preach, cast vision, strategize and collaborate with others to impact lives. He and Ingrid are Canadian by birth and became US citizens in 2014. They have three children, all married, and two terrific granddaughters. Fred is a runner, and hits just enough decent golf shots to play another round.
John Aukema, Associate Pastor
In the spring of 2019, Pastor John accepted the call to be the Associate Pastor of First CRC! He attended Redeemer University where he earned a B.A. in Psychology and went on to study at Calvin Theological Seminary. While in Grand Rapids, he met his wife Kristie. They have three children: Nathan, Kaleb, and Grace.
John and Kristie spent five years in Florida to work on a church plant and sixteen years serving as the pastor of Gateway Church in Zeeland, MI. Through Gateway, God gave them a special heart for the poor in the community where they really found out what it meant to "grow in the grace and the knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ" (2 Peter 3:18).
John's gifts are preaching/teaching, pastoral care, and hospitality, which he uses to express the love of God to people within the church and to its neighbors. He is confident that through belonging to Christ and the Crown Point Community, we will continue to become the kinds of Christians who bring others to Jesus!
Mitchell Olthoff, Worship & Arts Director
Mitchell was born in Illinois but has lived most of his life in Indiana. He graduated from Ivy Tech Community College and married his high school sweetheart, Nicole, in 2018. Being part of an authentic faith community is something that they cherish, and they love to meet new people! Mitchell has a passion for creating and leading Biblically-rooted, Christ-centered worship.
In his down time, he loves fishing, reading, and going on adventures with his wife. He officially joined the team here at First in December of 2019 after being on the worship team for a number of years.
Alex Monsma, Student Ministry Leader
Alex joined the team here in January of 2021. Prior to coming to Indiana, he served for five years as a Student Ministries Director in West Michigan. His passion is seeing kids come into a new or deeper relationship with Jesus Christ. He also enjoys seeing students involved in the everyday life of the church AND the church getting involved in the everyday lives of students. He builds all of his work around creating real relationships with those around him.
In his spare time, Alex enjoys spending time with his wife Stephanie and their three kids. They enjoy fishing, hunting, sports and spending time outdoors. The girls especially love crafts and baking too!
Jenn Prim, Children's Ministry Director
Jenn was born and raised in Illinois. She is a graduate of Trinity Christian College with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. Jenn spent six years teaching in various roles including 3rd grade, 4th grade, and music before becoming a mom and staying home with her son. Jenn is madly in love with her husband of sixteen years, Tim, and they consider it an honor and pure joy to be parents to their thirteen year old son, Timothy. Jenn has always had a passion for children and has fallen in love with her role as Children’s Ministry Coordinator at First CRC. She has a passion for shaping children’s faith and supporting parent’s calling to teach their children about Jesus. She has an even greater passion for Christ and is in awe of His love, faithfulness, and abundant goodness!
Kristie Aukema, Children's Ministry Assistant
Kristie grew up in Colorado and West Michigan as a pastor's kid. She attended West Michigan Christian High School and graduated from Calvin College with a degree in Elementary Education. She has always loved working with children and worked as a preschool teacher before moving to Crown Point with her family when her husband, John, accepted a call to serve as Associate Pastor at First CRC in 2019. Kristie and John have been married since 1995 and have three children: Nate, Kaleb, and Grace. Kristie works as the assistant to Jenn Prim, our Children's Ministry Director.
Lori Van Tholen, Office Assistant
Lori grew up in the NW Indiana area. She attended Illiana Christian High School and then went to Fox Business College. Lori and her husband, Nathan, have been married since 2004, and together they have 3 children: Blake, Micah, and Lorelai. Lori has worked part-time in the office at First CRC since July of 2009. She handles registrations and online forms, updates the website, maintains the people database and calendars, supports ministries and their office needs, orders supplies, and oversees the attendant scheduling.
Connie Reitsma, Office Assistant
Connie came to work at First Christian Reformed Church after attending for a decade and after retiring as Director of Volunteer Development for an international ministry for nearly twenty years. Even with six children (counting the in-laws), ten grandchildren, and one great grandson, she soon found out she couldn’t sit at home doing nothing, so began filling in at the church office the beginning of 2018. It wasn’t long before she was encouraged to stay on and knew that she could “begin” again, “belong” to a team, and “become” another instrument for the Lord.
Lorye Postma, Office Assistant
Lorye and her husband, Kevin, have lived in Northwest Indiana since 1988. They have a son and daughter in-law, and three grandchildren. She served as the Database Manager at Elim Christian Services for 27 years. She loved Elim’s mission, staff, and especially the students and adults with disabilities. In her free time, Lorye loves to be outdoors! She enjoys hiking, biking, gardening, and kayaking.
Amy graduated from Trinity Christian College in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accountancy. She has been the bookkeeper here at First CRC since 2008. Amy is married to Larry and they have three boys: Jacob, Max & Lucas. Amy really enjoys being a part of the worship team here at church as well as shopping, reading and spending time with family and friends.