Our Pastors and History

Pastors Dewey and Rhonda Friedel

Pastors Dewey and Ronda Friedel

Pastors Dewey and Ronda founded Shore Christian Center Church in June of 1977. For thirty-six years Pastor Dewey has been proclaiming the Word of God at Shore Christian Center. He brings passion, humor, and warmth with a unique anointing that speaks directly to the individual, edifying and bringing wholeness to the congregation. People who are helped often say, “He was speaking directly to me.” Pastor Dewey’s enlightening Biblical teachings have influenced and touched the lives of thousands around the world. He often begins his message by saying, “Turn to your neighbor and say: ‘You are going higher!’”

Pastor Dewey became a Christian as a young athlete. It was in a night baseball game that he had been benched and the coach asked him to pinch hit. He said to the Lord, “If you are real, help me hit a home run and I’ll find out all about you.” He hit the first pitch and it bolted over the left field scoreboard. That night at 11:30 he gave his life to Jesus Christ, and the next morning he asked his dad for a Bible. As a teenager he began preaching in his home church as his Pastor mentored him. He sang in a Gospel group on radio and traveled locally, singing and preaching. As student body president of Seaford High School in southern Delaware, he was able to bring relevant Christian speakers into the school. He also acted and sang lead roles in high school plays.

Pastor Dewey graduated from Oral Roberts University with a degree in Theological and Historical Studies, and he earned a Master’s degree from Princeton Theological Seminary in 1975. Upon graduation from Princeton, Pastors Dewey and Ronda traveled to New Delhi, India as missionaries. They experienced supernatural provision and preached healing and salvation to university students. They also held rallies in the countryside where whole families accepted Christ as they saw Jesus confirming the Word with signs following.

Three months after returning to the US, while they were visiting Charisma Chapel in Naples, Florida, a guest speaker, Dr. Ern Baxter, prophesied over Pastors Dewey and Ronda, the confirmation they were seeking from God to go and establish a multi-purpose Center for God’s people in the Northeast. Dr. Baxter became a great friend and mentor, and the Shore Christian Center (SCC) was founded in 1977. SCC began its meetings in the Manasquan Women’s Club in Manasquan, New Jersey. Its purpose was to bring people into wholeness of spirit, mind, and body. The church grew as Pastor Dewey proclaimed the “whole counsel of God” with passion, warmth, and humor. His cutting-edge, non-religious style attracted a wide variety of people, and his messages were eventually aired to millions on Christian television. Dewey and Ronda’s fire for Christ took them on another mission outreach to Kenya, Africa where Bishop Silas and Winnie Owiti became a part of the SCC family.

Pastor Dewey and Ronda’s passion for Christian education led them to found Baxter Christian Academy in 1989. The name was later changed to Shore Christian Academy for continuity. For twenty years the Academy produced championship students in character, education, academics, and sports. Many lives were changed in the Shore Christian Center gymnasium and on the SCC ball field as professional athletes conducted clinics and shared testimonies. During this time Pastor Dewey coached a nationally ranked AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) baseball team with several of his players receiving scholarships to play college ball, including his son, Isaac Friedel and another student who was drafted by the Boston Red Sox.

Isaac’s baseball career was interrupted due to a need for shoulder surgery. While recovering, Isaac traveled with his dad, Pastor Dewey, on a ministry trip, to the Los Angeles Dream Center where he met his future bride, Diamond. Her commitment to Christ drove Isaac into the Word and it became clear that he also had a pastoral call. After graduating from the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC), Isaac joined his parents in the SCC ministry. He now passionately preaches every Thursday at Happy Hour. He and his wife, Diamond, head an outreach team feeding and clothing the needy in Asbury Park, New Jersey. Their dream is to establish a New Jersey Dream Center like the one in Los Angeles which will give hope and security to those bound by addictions, as well as those suffering from broken or dysfunctional homes.

A major transition in the ministry occurred when the country’s economic downturn combined with other factors caused Shore Christian Center to lose its home of twenty-two years in Wall Township. Believing there are no accidents in God’s purposes, SCC forged ahead and is presently meeting at 700 Grand Avenue in Asbury Park, New Jersey. The change has resulted in promotion, as Pastor Dewey has spoken in the United Nations and has hosted the internationally celebrated show, “Praise the Lord” from TBN’s New York studio. Other media opportunities have opened, as Pastor Dewey now has a daily television program at 1:30 PM on Verizon Fios’ Alerta TV channel.

For many years, Pastor Dewey and SCC have helped feed thousands of orphans overseas, bought cars and trucks for pastors in developing countries, and fed 500 families a week through God’s Pantry in the New Jersey shore area. Pastor Dewey’s acclaimed books, Real Men Wear Boxer Shorts and Imagine That have impacted the lives of many all over the globe. He has shown people, through his audio-visual messages, who they are in Christ and thereby, encouraged many to succeed in fulfilling God’s ordained purpose for their lives. His passion is “to win the world to Jesus and lead everybody to wholeness.”

When asked to which Biblical character he most relates, Pastor Dewey says, “David! He is the masculine soul in me, the epitome of action heroes, though still artistic, tender, and the deepest lover of God and people.” Pastor Dewey’s proudest accomplishment is his 43 years of marriage to his “Sweet—Jelly Bean, Ronda Jean”, and their fantastically gifted, most honest, and cherished son Isaac, who pastors alongside his mom and dad with his beautiful bride, Diamond. New additions to the family, Judah and Lily, bring great joy and continue the Friedel family’s celebration of life!

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Pastor Isaac Friedel

As a teenager, growing up in church, Pastor Isaac had a dream of one day playing baseball professionally. While at St. Rose High School he excelled, receiving all-state honors and a full baseball scholarship to play division one baseball at the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

While at UMBC, the dream of playing baseball was interrupted by surgery on his injured shoulder. While recovering from surgery, in God’s divine providence, Pastor Isaac was invited to work and serve under Pastor Matthew Barnett at the Los Angeles Dream Center in the summer of 2006. The experience changed his life forever! After rededicating his life to the Lord at the Dream Center, God began to light a new fire in Pastor Isaac to bring the LA Dream Center’s transforming concepts to the lost and hurting families of the Jersey Shore. While serving there he met his future bride, Diamond Doty, whose life had been transformed through the Women’s Discipleship Program at the Dream Center.

After graduating from UMBC with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics and a minor in sociology, Isaac married Diamond on February 2, 2008. Not knowing how to begin bringing the Dream Center to the Jersey Shore, Isaac and his friend Steve Yellovich (who would become a board member) began by simply walking the streets of inner-city Asbury, handing out ice cold waters every Saturday. This simple act grew exponentially into a weekly mobile food truck, adopt-a-block in the Asbury Park Village, weekly clothing drives, BBQ’s, block parties, bike give-a-ways, toys for tots, Thanksgiving dinners, turkey give-a-ways, and much more.

Working together with Shore Christian Center Church the newly incorporated Jersey Shore Dream Center is able to feed over 2,000 families each month. In May of 2011 Pastor Isaac was recognized with the humanitarian award by the city of Newark, New Jersey and Mayor Cory Booker, for community service work done in the city of Asbury Park.

Presently, the JSDC has nine full time ministries! The ultimate dream and vision is to obtain a hotel facility and open a 24/7 discipleship center like the LA Dream Center from which Diamond graduated.

Pastor Isaac serves as the associate pastor of SCC church and has a dynamic preaching ministry each Thursday evening at 7:30 called HAPPY HOUR. He also preaches once a month on Sunday mornings. Pastor Isaac resides in Wall with his wife Diamond and their two precious children, Judah and Lily.