About Church of the Dunes

Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors

Church of the Dunes has a tradition of meaningful worship. Services include experienced, approachable teaching and preaching; artistic and symbolic visual elements; and music provided by adult choirs, children and youth singing groups, bell choirs, and praise music groups. 

The 8:30 a.m. worship service is called “Traditions.” Music for this service includes hymns and choral or bell choir music. At 10:30 a.m. “Elements,” worship and praise music is included along with choir and hymns. 

Mission

Serving others is an important focus at Church of the Dunes. Members and friends of the church share the love of Christ through work with local and global organizations that serve those in need of clean water, safe housing, nutritious food, education, or disaster relief. At least once each month, worship services include an opportunity to learn about and give to local organizations that serve people in need and feed the hungry.

Learning

There are opportunities for all ages to learn and grow in faith from pre-kindergarten nursery and faith-focused playtime to the church’s Finishing Well ministry for older adults. There are Bible stories and study, book and video discussion groups, and faith-focused creative arts activities.

Open for worship for the first time in 1962, the church building is recognized as an important piece of mid-20th century architecture. It was designed by Alden B. Dow, who declined to join his family’s business (Dow Chemical Company) to pursue becoming an architect. One of Dow’s early internships was with renown architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Completing the design for the building in the late 1950s, Dow’s goal was to create a structure that incorporated faith-focused symbolism and blended in with the scenic dune setting on which the church building sits. 

Entrances

On Sunday mornings, you are invited to enter the building through any of the entrances across the front (east) side of the building. During the week, please use the doors marked “weekday entrance.” 

Accessible 

There are many accessible parking spots near two entrances with power-assisted doors. Entrances are on the same level of the sidewalk; there are no stairs to navigate. There is an elevator to the lower level where some classes and groups meet. 

Connected With The Community

The church building is used by craft guilds, scouting troops, literacy training organizations, and others. On a spring or summer day, you may see a marching band practicing in the parking lot. (Each July, a bagpipe band uses the parking lot for pre-parade practices.) The outdoor grounds are also used as a staging area for walk-a-thons and other community events. A prayer labyrinth is nestled in the woods behind the church building, and is open to all for quiet meditation and prayer. 

Church of the Dunes is affiliated with the United Methodist Church. You can learn more here. 

A Place to Gather, Celebrate, and Remember

Meetings and Events

Church of the Dunes has spaces that can be used for family gatherings, meetings, presentations, classes, and special events. Please contact the church office for information about available dates and spaces, fees, and  policies regarding building use. 

Weddings

Church of the Dunes is a beautiful place for your special day. Please contact the church office for information about available dates, fees, connecting with the pastor to prepare for your wedding, and partnering with the church’s wedding planner.

Funerals

Please contact the pastor or the church office at the earliest opportunity if there has been a death of a member or friend of Church of the Dunes. The church is also here to assist members of the community who have experienced the death of a loved one. The pastor and staff can guide you as you prepare a funeral and/or funeral luncheon at the church. 

Church Office

Monday – Thursday 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Friday 9 a.m. – noon

office@umcdunes.org

(616) 842-7980 

Pastor and Staff

Rev. Louis (Lou) Grettenberger

Senior Pastor

Sherry Baker

Kitchen Coordinator

Jan Blanchard

Finance Manager

Ashley Boersma

Director of Youth Ministries

Shirley Chappell

Office Assistant

Megan Horist

Director of Worship Arts

Marna Jeffery

Organist and Accompanist

Carla Kocher

Director of Communications

Daniel Malseed

Director of Children’s Ministries

Cathryn Marshall

Administrative Assistant

Chuck Welton

Custodian

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