Dr. John Teter was born in Los Angeles, California, the son of Korean and Dutch parents. He was raised in a non-religious home, but while at UCLA, Jesus captured his heart and life through an evangelistic Bible study. John went on to serve with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship for twelve years at USC, Cal State Dominguez Hills, and Compton College.
John and his family moved into the inner city of Long Beach to incarnate God’s love and make disciples. There, they planted Fountain of Life Covenant Church, a multiethnic and multi-class church where John serves as senior pastor.
John also serves as the executive director of Fountain of Life Antioch, which develops and mentors apostles and church planters in the United States and Asia.He is passionate about calling, training, and sending the next generation of church planters to establish churches that are strong in faith and see God add to their numbers daily. John has also served in a denominational capacity for the Evangelical Covenant Church, as the church planting team leader and as the evangelism team leader .
John is the author of three books, The Power of the 72: Ordinary Disciples in Extraordinary Evangelism (InterVarsity Press, December 2017), Get the Word Out, and Jesus & the Hip Hop Prophets (co-authored with Alex Gee).
John and his wife, Becky, have been blessed with three wonderful children. In his spare time, John enjoys good film and television, fantasy football, and being a part of the Los Angeles Lakers Band.
Becky Teter is the Executive Minister of Fountain of Life Covenant Church. For Becky, it has been a dream come true to see God establish FOL over these past 8 years. She currently provides leadership for staff care, community outreach, and a little thing we like to call 5000 Pies. FOL’s social enterprise, 5000 Pies, seeks to transform the lives of young adults in West Long Beach through culinary employment and life skills coaching.
Becky was born and raised in Los Angeles. Now, John and Becky, along with their three kids, call the LBC home.
Becky and John share a life verse, John 1:16: “For of His fullness, we have all received grace upon grace.”
Benny Amaya, city evangelist, is a native of Los Angeles. At the age of 21, after God’s intervention, he invited Jesus into his life. He has been married to Lili for 14 years and they have 4 beautiful boys.
Benny enjoys movies and music, especially music with a hip hop beat. He also loves to watch soccer although he doesn’t play! (Go LA Galaxy!)
Benny has a passion for the lost and desires to serve God through sharing the Good News. He has a strong desire to reach what he calls “the least of the lost.” Benny believes in the importance of being present in the city where we have the opportunity to meet God at work in the people.
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.” (Romans 1.16)
Director of Youth Ministry
James Carroll is FOL’s Director of Youth Ministry. He is a Long Beach native and he has a deep love for our city!
James was first introduced to FOL at the very beginning of the church when staff members walked into the music store where he worked and asked about their sound needs. God had already been working in James’s life and he was soon involved with FOL. God gave James a vision for ministry in 2012, and He confirmed it numerous times in the following years. In September 2014, James joined the staff team as the full-time youth director.
James brings a lot of energy and love for the youth in Long Beach along with a strong love for God and his Word. On a typical day, he can be found attending early morning Bible study with Pastor John, hanging with the Cabrillo High School kids at 5000 Pies (buying Jaguar fries), and at the 5000 Pies Club on campus, or playing games and studying the Bible with the FOL youth.
James attended Hamilton Middle School and Jordan High School. From an early age he had a love for music, he started playing professionally at the age of 17. He has played with the Royal Philharmonic Symphony and a wide variety of bands from all different genres. James loves movies, books, and coffee.
“By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.” (John 15:8)
Sammie Kau serves as an operations manager with Fountain of Life Covenant Church. She grew up in the Asian-American church and moved to Long Beach for college in 2013. Through InterVarsity Christian Fellowship at CSULB, she fell in love with administration, worship, and the endlessly diverse, all-powerful Kingdom of God.
In her off time, you can find Sammie listening to new music in a local coffee shop with a good book and nice pens.
“Search me, O God, and know my heart. Try me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalm 139:23-24)
Director of Tutoring
Emily Kazim migrated from Northern California to Long Beach in the summer of 2013, and shortly thereafter became involved in FOL. Before taking the position of Director of Tutoring, Emily spent two years volunteering in and cultivating a deep love and passion for the program at the Family Center. As the tutoring director, Emily coordinates volunteers’ schedules, oversees the day-to-day operations of the sessions, and implements initiatives to develop and expand relationships with the parents and family members of the students involved in the program.
In addition to directing tutoring, Emily assists with FOL’s administrative tasks, including preparing bulletins, helping coordinate events, and lending a hand or edit wherever/whenever necessary.
In her off time, you can find Emily working out and listening to audiobooks, reading, or cooking with her husband, Stephen.
“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” (Micah 6:8)
Director of Member Care
Dan Palomino serves at Fountain of Life part-time as Pastor of Member Care, which includes mentoring, pastoral counseling, and pre-marital counseling. Dan is a trained chaplain, ministering to the sick in the hospital setting as well as to those who are approaching end of life. He also serves on the FOL Worship Team and occasionally leads worship. In fact, he loves corporate worship and prayer. He also enjoys good movies, jazz and classic rock. He has been happily married to his amazing wife, Sylvia, since 1996 and they have three children: Micah, Karis and Kanda.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope” (Romans 15:13).
“For the kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power” (1 Corinthians 4:20).
Carol Sato serves as the administrator of Fountain of Life Covenant Church . Based on the root word of administrator in Acts 27:11, “to steer the ship,” her responsibilities enable the church to carry out its goals and purposes.
When she worked at the United Way of Los Angeles in an administrative position, God placed in on her heart a love for organizational development. At that time, she thought it would be ideal to see her love for developing organizations and ministry come together. In God’s sovereignty, He called her to work at a large Asian American church where that desire came to fruition. Now, to serve the Lord at FOL with her family is an added bonus.
Carol’s favorite verse is Psalm 16:11: “You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
Director of Communications
Tim Sato serves as director of communications and as associate director of FOL Antioch, which supports and provides resources for urban church plants.
Before moving to Long Beach, Tim, Caroline, and their kids Daniel and Lucia, lived in South Los Angeles, where they were members of Church of the Redeemer Covenant Church. His family has been deeply influenced by heroes like John Perkins and Jeremiah, the prophet who communicated God’s message to “Seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf; for in its welfare you will have welfare.” (Jeremiah 29:7)
In his spare time, Tim enjoys watching sports, reading, cooking, and playing fantasy football. Someday he will learn to speak Spanish like the rest of his family.