Elders minister to the spiritual needs of the congregation. Their responsibilities include preaching the Word, teaching biblical theology and exhorting when necessary.

To contact an elder, send an e-mail to elders@newcovenantnaperville.orq

Chris Castaldo
Lead Pastor

Chris Castaldo (BA, Moody Bible Institute; MDiv, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary; PhD, London School of Theology) was raised on Long Island, New York. For the last sixteen years, he has served in the Chicagoland area, at College Church in Wheaton and then at Wheaton College where he directed the Ministry of Gospel Renewal, a ministry devoted to equipping evangelicals for constructive engagement with Catholic friends and loved ones. Since November of 2014, Chris has served as Lead Pastor of New Covenant Church, Naperville.

Chris has authored and contributed to several books including: The Unfinished Reformation: What Unites and Divides Catholics and Protestants after 500 Years (cowritten with Gregg Allison), Talking with Catholics about the Gospel: A Guide for Evangelicals (Zondervan, 2015), Journeys of Faith: Evangelicalism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Catholicism, and Anglicanism (Zondervan, 2012), and Holy Ground: Walking with Jesus as a Former Catholic (Zondervan, 2009). He has written articles for publications such as Religion News ServiceChristianity TodayTouchstone JournalCredo Magazine, Themelios, First Things, and The Gospel Coalition.

Jacob Warren
Pastor of Congregational Life

As Pastor of Congregational Life at New Covenant Church, Jacob’s overarching desire is that he himself might know the love of Christ more deeply and that he might be a part of the work “to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for [the] building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to [maturity], to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.”

 Jacob completed his undergraduate degree at East Texas Baptist University in 2001, where he met and married his best friend Sara. After graduation, he and Sara moved overseas where they sought to serve Christ via cross-cultural ministry. It was during this time that all three of their children were all born as foreigners abroad. After returning to the States, Jacob completed his seminary degree while working full-time in the banking industry. Jacob then served as a corporate chaplain for two and a half years before joining the two-year pastoral residency program at College Church. Jacob and his family are excited about this new role at New Covenant Church and are desirous of your prayers! 

Karl Pennings

Karl was born and raised in Michigan where he started following Jesus at a young age.  He has engineering degrees from Michigan State University and the University of Texas and works as a structural engineer designing buildings.  Karl has been part of New Covenant church since 2007, before the church plant when future NCC members were meeting together as a Sunday School class at College Church.  In his spare time he enjoys reading biographies as well as playing and coaching both soccer and basketball.  He and his wife Lindsay live in Naperville with their three children; Seth, Luke & Norah.

Ockert Labuschagne

Ockert was born in a mining town called Thabazimbi (mountain of iron) on the African Savana. He grew up mostly on a farm, in a Christian family, and has been a follower of Jesus since he was 16. Ockert is married to Susan and has 3 children and 2 grandchildren. He and Susan have been living in the US since 1998 and have been in Naperville since 2002 and, have been at New Covenant ever since. Ockert has served as the chair of the Building and Finance Committee and has been on the Elder Board since 2003. His passion is to serve God’s people by helping ensure that His unabbreviated Word is preached to them in truth and love. Ockert is an Electrical and Software Engineer who enjoys photography, videography, traveling, gardening, construction and manufacturing.

Manny Robert

Manny Robert has served as an elder since 2017, bringing his gifts to men’s ministry, gospel communities, and in various forms of hospitality. Manny also serves as liaison to the missions team. Having grown up as a missionary kid, he is constantly raising the bar for the Elders to think carefully about our calling to gospel witness.

Jeffery James

Jeffery James grew up on the East Coast, but has spent most of his adult life in the western suburbs of Chicago. Jeffery moved to Naperville to help plant a church that is now New Covenant Church. Jeffery and Clarinda are parents to five children who are now teenagers and young adults. A business owner for almost 20 years, outside of work and family he is always open for run.