The Shore Christian Center will begin holding services at the House of Independents, 572 Cookman Ave., Sun., May 8 Mother’s Day.
The move comes at the same time as the unexpected death of the Rev. Dewey Friedel April 18. Dewey Friedel’s son Rev. Isaac Friedel, who had been working along his father and will now take over running the church.
Isaac said this week that it will be a bit “intimidating” pastoring his first service without his father.
“It will be bittersweet,” he said.
Up until now Isaac, who was ordained by his father in 2010, has been an associate pastor to his father.
“This is all going to be totally different…and with a new place,” he said.
Isaac said his father was not ill, nor had he ever even been in the hospital.
“It was the craziest thing, he had never been sick a day in his life. When my mother went upstairs to bring him his breakfast the morning of April 18, he was already gone – he went straight to heaven,” Isaac said.
This week’s services at the House of Independents, beginning at 10 a.m., will be dedicated to Ronda Friedel.
Pastor Dewey and Ronda founded the Shore Christian Center in June of 1977 and built a large church in Wall Township where it operated for many years.
The Shore Christian Center, which also runs The Dream Center Charity, was previously operating out of a building at 700 Grand Avenue in the city.
When that building was sold and they lost their lease they moved services to the VFW in Asbury Park.
Isaac said recently one of the church’s elders met with representatives of the House of Independents, which has seating for 275, and decided to enter into a partnership.
“We went to see it and it was an absolutely gorgeous venue,” Isaac said.
He added that the church has a building fund and a goal of buying a place of its own within two years.
Isaac and his wife Diamond, who live in Wall Township, have two children.
Diamond Friedel runs the Dream Center’s Women’s’ Program, which includes a food truck, diaper pantry and a restitution home, a place for mothers in drug rehabilitation to be reunited with their babies.
“I have a big vision for Asbury Park,” Isaac said.
He explained that the Asbury Park Dream Center is modeled after a much larger one operating in Los Angeles.
Diamond, who is from California, was a graduate of the Los Angeles Dream Center’s Women’s Program.
Isaac said several years ago while living in Los Angeles he worked for the Dream Center, visiting and serving people on Skid Row.
“It really motivated me to start something at the Jersey Shore,” he said.