Calvary pastors are eager to serve you. To contact them directly, email them through the form below.
Steve Whinery - SENIOR PASTOR
Mitch Dunfee, Matt Kessie, Zach Lamberson, Kyle Skinner, Brandon Bee - ASSOCIATE PASTORS
“I was born in 1959 in Central California. When I was a baby, my parents moved to Riverside, in Southern California, and spent much of the rest of my childhood in the Riverside area. Coming from a broken home, I had much of the baggage that can come along with a “dysfunctional family” and by the time I was in high school had become pretty cynical about life in general and people in particular. It was at this point I was invited by a friend to attend Calvary Chapel in Riverside. After some convincing I decided to show up and it was that night in the summer of 1975 that I first surrendered my life to Jesus. I had no idea what I was getting in to. After a few years of struggling in my walk with Christ, culminating in a 9 month backslide, I gave my heart back to the Lord at the age of 19 and have been serving Him ever since.
Although I was involved in athletics and did well scholastically, I had been known for partying and a violent streak. When I rededicated my life to the Lord, all of that was left behind and I began looking for ways I could please and serve the Lord who saved me. I sat under the teaching of Greg Laurie, pastor of Calvary Riverside. I also began getting involved in ministry at Calvary Chapel, first as an usher, then, as the Lord opened up opportunities, as a new convert counselor. During this time I was working construction, which provided ample opportunity for telling coworkers about Jesus. I also began teaching a Bible study at the home of my future brother and sister in law. That is where I met my wife, Bobi.
"Hi. I am Mitch Dunfee and I became a Christian at 28 years old, proof that Jesus will take anyone.
I grew up with an alcoholic dad that, when sober, was a great dad. Unfortunately the sober times were overwhelmed by the periods of drinking. It is amazing how God used this in my life.
You see, as I became an adult I began to try and make sure I was doing better than my dad. I had a steady respectable job, I only got drunk once or twice a month (after i turned 23), I did not beat my kids because I was drunk and out of control.
You see, I had a mark to measure how good of a guy I was. I was better than a drunk.
When I was 23 I met and ultimately married Marci and after two years of marriage she somehow was not as impressed with my incredibly high standard of being better than a drunk and left me for about a month. We reconciled for our kids sake but things were building up again between us because I could not be a man that put others needs truly before himself.
“Greetings! I was born in Kadlec Medical in Richland in the year of our Lord 1977. Debbie Boone’s “you light up my life” was the number one hit song 10 weeks in a row. Fitting, since that’s when this little light entered the world. Ah yes, the sweet sounds of star wars laser gun and a crying sister filled our house with warmth & affection. I grew up in a loving Christian home (I got in trouble usually when my sister cried, which was often) with a younger sister, a brother and both parents. We had a rat dog named Jamie. I loved her. I am ashamed.
Growing up in our school district during the 80’s was a real pleasant time. I can’t think of a single acquaintance in school that came from a divorced home. It was reared in us to wait for marriage and to keep ourselves pure. Teenage pregnancy was scarce. I went to a baptist church that was full of people who loved Christ with me being one of them. I gave my life to the Lord when i was 8 (my dad introduced me to Him) and it was real.
Yet the world was changing and I didn’t know how to be a Christian and be popular at the same time (actually I didn’t even really know how to be popular). I didn’t know how to live righteously and fit in with my friends, but praise God for conviction! Something in me kept me from going overboard. With all of my failures and weaknesses, how great the grace of God protected me and transformed me! When one gives his life to Christ at a young age it’s a wonderful thing because of the sure foundation he starts off on.
“In pasco is where I was born and raised, on the playground is where I spent most of my days...wow, where do I begin? umm. Let's change this to the 3rd person and start over. Zach was born in ‘83 and basically just sat around until his beautiful wife graced his presence in 2004. Shortly after they married...the end. Kidding. (not about the wife). I can't think of a more fitting verse to describe my life than psalm 37:4 "Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart." Not that everything in my life has been roses, but everyday I wake up to the feel of the grace of God raining in my life. It's a beautiful thing to be loved by the Creator.
I was blessed to be raised by two godly people (my parents Garry and Tracie), have two wonderful siblings (my brothers Jamey and Nash), and came to know my Savior at a very young age (I think I was baptized when I was like 7). My family life was typical. Naps and cartoons after school. Lots of punching and forts, and of course our weekly after church lunch at Casa Chapala! When I was in 7th grade my family started attending Calvary Chapel and I have been hooked ever since.
In high school (Kamiakin that is) I began to have my faith challenged by some atheist friends of mine. What Satan intended for evil, God used for great good in my life, strengthening my convictions and further cementing my deep affectionate love for Christ. After high school I went to CBC (Community College) for 2 years and graduated with an AA degree that sits nicely inside of my closet under a pile of books.
'Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think according to the power that works in us'…. It is the verse found in Ephesians 3:20 that I think of every time when presenting what God has done in my life. It was 2005 when my grandfather was informed he had terminal cancer.
God impressed on me to write a letter to my grandparents on how to receive Christ. Having been raised in and out of church and living a party lifestyle since high school I felt inadequate and unqualified but went ahead and wrote it. God not only used this letter to present the gospel to my grandfather shortly before his death but to confirm that God had not designed me to live for myself. It was then that I surrendered my life to Christ. Soon after, God took the desire of the party lifestyle, like drinking, from my life. He gave me opportunities to go on short term missions transforming my perspectives. In 2007, God again went exceedingly abundantly above my expectations and gave me a beautiful wife, Michelle, who loves the Lord.
Again a year later we were were blessed with our oldest son Kaleb, than Ethan in 2010, and Luke in 2013. During this time God led me to serve in Junior High (which was not my 1st choice) starting in 2008. Through God’s power, He has helped me love and serve this age group ever since. My plan coming out of college was to acquire my dad’s financial advising business. That desire began to change as I served in Junior High. It was in 2013 that God provided and confirmed a position to lead Junior High at Calvary. This is a glimpse of the grace and mercy that God has poured into my life. It’s exciting to watch how God works as we grow in our relationship with Him!
Kyle is an associate pastor here at Calvary and is the contact for jr. high ministries. To contact Kyle, please complete the email form on the following page. To request a counseling appoint with Kyle, please call the Calvary office.
Brandon grew up in Tacoma, Wa (near Seattle). With parents in the music ministry, they traveled around the US playing at Fairs and Churches. As a young child, consumed by music, he quickly realized his gifts in production and arrangement. At 16 he started pursuing a career in Record Producing. It took him to a bunch of the music business' hubs like Nashville, LA, and Las Vegas. Although he knew the Lord, he cared too much for his career and made it the focus of his life.
First a son (Noah) and then Marriage to his wife (Leanne) changed his life. It wasn't until his early 20's that he recommitted his life to Jesus and was activated into ministry as a worship leader. The next 10 years he found himself playing many roles in the ministry. Traveling worship artist, pastor, starting two record labels, starting a publishing company, and international missionary.
God has used Brandon in many churches to equip the Church in practical ways about worship and invoke a spiritual awakening in churches all around the globe. Brandon leads worship and oversees outreach missions here at Calvary.