About First Presbyterian Church of Oakland

Our warm and loving church shares God’s love, revealed in Jesus Christ, in our lives together and in service to our community.
About Us Community

Our community openly embraces guest and visitors. You may attend church or participate in events as much or as little as you like and not be judged. Adults and children can grow by participating as leaders in worship services, organizing or helping with special events, and participating in regular activities.

Community Lunch

We share a sense of hope and joy, and express it through worship, choir, musical and cultural performances, Bible study, adult education, Youth Connection, lunches, barbecues, retreats, and home gatherings.

We share a sense of hope and joy, and express it through worship, choir, musical and cultural performances, Bible study, adult education, Youth Connection, lunches, barbecues, retreats, and home gatherings.

Community Lunch
Community Photo

We are inspired by scripture and the teaching of Martin Luther King, Jr. We offer events relating to racism, sexism, homophobia, civil rights and trans-visibility. We are a More Light faith family and are committed to welcoming and including the LGBTQIA+ community.

Our Staff

Matt Prinz

Pastor

Rev. Matthew (“Matt”) Prinz cares deeply about building Christian community, formed in the way of Jesus, to contribute to justice and peace in the city of Oakland. As pastor, his mission is to bring our church community closer each other and to God and to grow in our love for our neighbors and city. 

Inspired by the church’s leadership and participation in the abolition and civil rights movements, Matt believes that a multi-racial/multi-generational church fellowship can be a gift to our city. He believes that as we grow into God’s beloved community – we will help to dismantle systems and structures upholding white supremacy, patriarchy, and homophobia within our culture.

A native Californian who grew up in Ventura, Matt received a Master of Divinity from Fuller Theological Seminary in 2004. He was ordained as a Minister of the Word and Sacrament on December 10, 2006. Matt lives in East Oakland with his wife Susannah and their two daughters Monrovia and Ruby. He enjoys reading, gardening, cooking, running, looking at contemporary art, and coaching his daughters’ soccer teams.


Email: matt@firstchurchoakland.org
Office Phone: 510-488-3812

Pastor - Matt Prinz

Matt Prinz

Pastor

Rev. Matthew (“Matt”) Prinz cares deeply about building Christian community, formed in the way of Jesus, to contribute to justice and peace in the city of Oakland. As pastor, his mission is to bring our church community closer each other and to God and to grow in our love for our neighbors and city. 

Inspired by the church’s leadership and participation in the abolition and civil rights movements, Matt believes that a multi-racial/multi-generational church fellowship can be a gift to our city. He believes that as we grow into God’s beloved community – we will help to dismantle systems and structures upholding white supremacy, patriarchy, and homophobia within our culture.

A native Californian who grew up in Ventura, Matt received a Master of Divinity from Fuller Theological Seminary in 2004. He was ordained as a Minister of the Word and Sacrament on December 10, 2006. Matt lives in East Oakland with his wife Susannah and their two daughters Monrovia and Ruby. He enjoys reading, gardening, cooking, running, looking at contemporary art, and coaching his daughters’ soccer teams.


Email: matt@firstchurchoakland.org
Office Phone: 510-488-3812

Joel Mackey

Parish Associate

Rev. Joel Mackey brings a long history of spiritual commitment and community service to First Presbyterian Church of Oakland. Joel has spent his life’s calling to serve as part of a community active in ‘repairing the world’ through tangible acts of justice, mercy, and grace. His significant lifelong experience in nonprofit organizations has focused on the housing, educational, economic. and spiritual needs of people. He is thrilled to be called to a ministry setting where the congregation is engaged in concretely serving its community.

A long-time Bay Area resident, Joel is currently a professional clinical counselor at Bay Area Community Resource and an attorney in private practice. Joel is a graduate of Northwestern University, the University of California, Berkeley, and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary at Northwestern University and has a passion for coaching youth sports. 
Email: joelmackay@comcast.net

Parish Associate - Joel Mackey

Joel Mackey

Parish Associate

Rev. Joel Mackey brings a long history of spiritual commitment and community service to First Presbyterian Church of Oakland. Joel has spent his life’s calling to serve as part of a community active in ‘repairing the world’ through tangible acts of justice, mercy, and grace. His significant lifelong experience in nonprofit organizations has focused on the housing, educational, economic. and spiritual needs of people. He is thrilled to be called to a ministry setting where the congregation is engaged in concretely serving its community.

A long-time Bay Area resident, Joel is currently a professional clinical counselor at Bay Area Community Resource and an attorney in private practice. Joel is a graduate of Northwestern University, the University of California, Berkeley, and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary at Northwestern University and has a passion for coaching youth sports.
Email: joelmackay@comcast.net

Jake Fontana

Music Director

Jake Fontana is an organist, pianist, and choir director originally from the east coast with decades of experience in church music. He has studied at Holy Cross, Oberlin Conservatory, and Yale School of Music and spent a year abroad in Germany studying historical instruments as a Fulbright Scholar. He is the recipient of multiple international prizes in organ and harpsichord performance. Most recently Jake served as Director of Music at an Episcopal church in Connecticut. Currently he lives with his wife Christina in Emeryville and is pursuing a doctoral degree in psychology in Berkeley.

Community Relationships Manager - Micheline La Mont

Jake Fontana

Music Director

Jake Fontana is an organist, pianist, and choir director originally from the east coast with decades of experience in church music. He has studied at Holy Cross, Oberlin Conservatory, and Yale School of Music and spent a year abroad in Germany studying historical instruments as a Fulbright Scholar. He is the recipient of multiple international prizes in organ and harpsichord performance. Most recently Jake served as Director of Music at an Episcopal church in Connecticut. Currently he lives with his wife Christina in Emeryville and is pursuing a doctoral degree in psychology in Berkeley.

Micheline La Mont

Community Relationships Manager

Micheline La Mont oversees First Church’s events calendar and venue rentals, assisting 18 Community Partners and the public with use of space at First Church. She also leads the weekly communications effort, overseeing the weekly newsletter, email and social media. She brings more than 35 years of experience in the marketing and public relations space to First Church.

A native San Franciscan, Micheline has lived in the Bay Area for most of her life, residing in Oakland
since 1989. Micheline thrives on the pulse of the East Bay, enjoying cycling in the hills, hiking, attending community events, and gardening.

Email: micheline@firstchurchoakland.org
Phone Number:510-488-3810

Parish Associate - Joel Mackey

Micheline La Mont

Community Relationships Manager

Micheline La Mont oversees First Church’s events calendar and venue rentals, assisting 18 Community Partners and the public with use of space at First Church. She also leads the weekly communications effort, overseeing the weekly newsletter, email and social media. She brings more than 35 years of experience in the marketing and public relations space to First Church.

A native San Franciscan, Micheline has lived in the Bay Area for most of her life, residing in Oakland
since 1989. Micheline thrives on the pulse of the East Bay, enjoying cycling in the hills, hiking, attending community events, and gardening.

Email: micheline@firstchurchoakland.org
Phone Number:510-488-3810

Raenelle Tauro

Godly Play

Raenelle Tauro began her Godly Play journey over 12 years ago as an Associate Director for Children’s Ministry at Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church. Since then, she has continued to work in a variety of non-profit settings and became a Godly Play trainer in 2022.

In 2023 the Godly Play Foundation was awarded a $1 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. from their Christian Parent and Caregiving program. This grant has enabled the Foundation to launch a new project entitled, “Everyday Godly Play.” Raenelle was hired by the Foundation as a Co-Director of this project and is ready to expand the work of Godly Play exploring new ways for children to deepen their awareness of the mystery of God through wonder, play, rhythm, and narrative in their homes and communities. As a new Godly Play trainer in the Bay Area Raenelle is working with Di Pagel on supporting churches with Godly Play programs and training those who are in ministry with children.

Parish Associate - Joel Mackey

Raenelle Tauro

Godly Play

Raenelle Tauro began her Godly Play journey over 12 years ago as an Associate Director for Children’s Ministry at Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church. Since then, she has continued to work in a variety of non-profit settings and became a Godly Play trainer in 2022.

In 2023 the Godly Play Foundation was awarded a $1 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. from their Christian Parent and Caregiving program. This grant has enabled the Foundation to launch a new project entitled, “Everyday Godly Play.” Raenelle was hired by the Foundation as a Co-Director of this project and is ready to expand the work of Godly Play exploring new ways for children to deepen their awareness of the mystery of God through wonder, play, rhythm, and narrative in their homes and communities. As a new Godly Play trainer in the Bay Area Raenelle is working with Di Pagel on supporting churches with Godly Play programs and training those who are in ministry with children.