About Us

Our Vision

We believe that God’s rule and reign is expanding on the earth and that the power of God is available for healing, deliverance and salvation. As a church, it is our desire to see each person living fully for God in their calling. We stand with men and women to help them come into God’s high purposes.

Our Values

WORD WORSHIP WORKS WARMTH

THE WORD

Vineyard at the River is passionate about the Word of God. Knowing His Word, helps us know and experience the relationship God wants us to have with Him. Accordingly, we hear God through study of the Bible.

Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6). This means that the truth is personal and addresses us personally. We also believe that God’s Word is living and active and transforms us as we sit under its teaching and ministry (Hebrews 4:12).

Vineyard at the River believes that this truth-value expresses itself in a variety of ways:

• Weekend Worship Services
• Small Group Bible Studies
• Personal Study
• Special Equipping and Training Events

WORSHIP

Jesus laid down his life to purchase worshipers (Jn 4:23), those who would worship God in Spirit and in Truth. Today He is still seeking worshipers. It is our goal to worship Him, empowered by the Spirit, in a way that is true, genuine, and integrious. We don’t want to just sing about God but also sing to God; He is listening. We don’t want to just exegete God but to also experience God; He is near. We experience His love, presence, and power in a very personal, intimate way as we worship Him with all of our heart, mind, and strength. Come join us in passionate worship of God!

Vineyard at the River has multiple worship teams and small group worship leaders. We are always looking for skilled musicians, vocalists, and sound reinforcement personnel who have a passion for worshiping God.

WORKS

Jesus said that we were to do and teach everything He did. He even said, “greater” works would follow His disciples. Because believers have the Spirit of God and are filled with the Holy Spirit, we are to demonstrate the King’s heart and His Kingdom here on earth. Signs, Wonders, Miracles, Healing and prophetic utterance are to be normal. As we follow Jesus, and worship Him, we’ll see the manifestation of His power on the earth through us.

PROPHECY
The Spirit of prophecy is the testimony of Jesus Christ (Re 19:10). We depend on the Holy Spirit to bring prophetic revelation of Jesus in our teaching, preaching, worship, and small group life; first through His written word, and also through prophetic expressions. Prophecy by church members for encouragement, strengthening, and comfort is welcome in our church life at appropriate moments. Public prophecy is subject to scriptural evaluation and correction by our pastors. Our Prophetic Community meets monthly for fellowship and training.

BENEVOLENCE AND OUTREACH
The benevolence/outreach ministry includes helping the poor, providing for needs that would otherwise go unmet, and reaching out to the community at various community events (Mt 25: 34-40).

MISSIONS
Mission teams from Vineyard at the River have gone all over the world and will continue to do so as Jesus commanded us to make disciples of all nations (Mt 28: 18-20). Vineyard at the River has sent teams independently and has also partnered with established organizations.

WARMTH
The value of Warmth at Vineyard at the River is a key foundation to our church. Fellowship together in God has been a basic tenant of the church as a whole and at Vineyard at the River since its inception (Acts 2:42-44). This is expressed in the variety of ministries and activities here on weekly basis.

Jesus chose 12 from among them with whom He shared life intimately. And from among those, He selected an even smaller group of three, who surrounded Jesus at critical points throughout His ministry.

Home Groups and Small Groups are a MAJOR part of church life at Vineyard at the River. We urge you to join one! Click here to see a listing of groups.

Theological Statement

The River is part of the Association of Vineyard Churches.

| To view our Theological Statement PDF click here |

Our Team

Don Wheeler

Don Wheeler

Co-Pastor | Counselor

Don Wheeler and his wife Kelly live in Mission Viejo. They have a grown daughter and son-in-law, Amanda and Robert Barbosa.

Before leading here at Vineyard at the River, Don served as associate pastor at the Newport Vineyard from 2002 till 2011. In addition to sharing, teaching and leading responsibilities with Carl Tuttle, he has a passion for people and a gift for counseling. He oversees pastoral counseling, men's ministry, and children's and youth ministry. He earned his bachelor's degree from Oral Roberts University and went on to complete his master's degree at Pepperdine University. He loves missions and has been on every trip to Uganda with the church's team.

Carl Tuttle

Carl Tuttle

Co-Pastor | Small Groups

Carl Tuttle has been serving in pastoral ministry since 1977. A founding father in the Vineyard movement and pioneer in modern worship, Carl is passionate about love for Jesus and devotion to Christ, His Church, and cause.

Carl assists with small groups, preaching, equipping, pastoral care of the worship community and college and young adults. Carl has six children and three grand daughters who are his pride and joy. We are appreciative to have him serving as part of our team.

John and Lori Courdy

John and Lori Courdy

Assistant Pastors | SOZO Directors

John and Lori Courdy have been married over 35 years. They have four grown children living in Orange County. They have been involved in praying, counseling, and inner healing ministries for over 30 years.

They oversee the SOZO ministry in Orange County. John and Lori currently lead the ministry team at The River, which insures good, deep, and safe prayer for anyone on Sunday mornings and nights.

They are also in charge of an inner healing and counseling ministry called Fresh Start. They have a passion to see believers come into joyful maturity and walking into the destiny God has called them to.

Brenda Zeyak

Brenda Zeyak

Women's Pastor

Brenda Zeyak is a woman with a passion for seeing women come into their destiny and experience the intimate love of the Father. Besides overseeing women's Bible studies, retreats, and annual women's events, Brenda hosts a monthly women’s meeting in her home to encourage women to connect with one another at the church.

Brenda’s desire to serve women also goes beyond Vineyard at the River. Brenda and her husband work with a ministry based in Bangkok, Thailand, that trains pastors and church leaders in ten nations of Asia, and they are also involved in ministry in Brazil.

Brenda and her husband Joe live in Santa Ana. They have 5 grown children and 3 grandchildren.

Caitlin Scudder

Caitlin Scudder

Administrator

Angelica Faragalli

Angelica Faragalli

PreSchool Director

Angelica is an amazing young woman who serves each week with our PreSchoolers. She always has a smile on her face and puts a smile on the face of others too.

Darleen Faragalli

Darleen Faragalli

Nursery & Toddler Director

My name is Darleen Faragalli and am the Nursery and Toddlers Director. I am a single mom of two teenage daughters. Angelica is a Sophomore at Hope International University in Fullerton. Ashton is a Junior at El Modena High School. We have lived in the City of Orange for over 12 years. I am a legal assistant and have worked for my boss for 23 years. During my time at The River I have gone from being a teacher in Kids Rock, to Director of Kids Rock, to Director of the Preschoolers Class, and now Director of the Toddlers Class. Each level has been a unique and wonderful experience. I have been immensely blessed in working with the teachers for the youngest members of our church.

Brandon C., Elyssa E., Steven N., Alyssa S., and Alex T.

Brandon C., Elyssa E., Steven N., Alyssa S., and Alex T.

Youth Leaders

This amazing team of young adults have taken on the ministry of Junior High and High School aged youth in our congregation.

Sandi and Phil Mahlow

Sandi and Phil Mahlow

Missions Directors | Graphics

Mark and Karen Bennett

Mark and Karen Bennett

Children's Directors

Mark and Karen began working as teachers in Children's Ministry at Vineyard at the River in August of 2013. Before that, they were involved in Children's and Youth Ministry at The Vineyard Anaheim.
Mark and Karen met at a Home Group at The Vineyard Anaheim over 32 years ago. They married on Valentine's Day, 1987, and have 10 children: Benjamin (25) married to Christine, Bethany (23), Grace (21), Micah (with The Lord), Jedidiah (17), John Mark (14), Esther (11), Caleb (9), Rebekah (7), and Mercy (3). Together, they educate their children at home.

Eva Camarata

Eva Camarata

Testimonies | Historian

Mary Weyer

Mary Weyer

Prayer Chain

Mary Weyer has overseen The Prayer Chain since 2006.
She was born in the Netherlands and was saved when she was 40 years old.
She is married to Hans, who also serves in various ways. Together they have 2 sons, 2 grandsons & one granddaughter. Mary loves to see God move when people support one another through prayer.