Rev. Inga Freyer-Nicholas M.Div., 1988
April 10, 2010
The Reverend Inga Freyer-Nicholas, OSL, wife of The Reverend Ronal Freyer-Nicholas, OSL, Pastor of Pilgrims’ United Church of Christ, Fruitland Park, died peacefully Tuesday, April 20, 2010, at Cornerstone Hospice in Lady Lake.
She was born 19 October 1948 in New York City to Martin and April (Temple) Freyer but grew up in California, graduating from San Rafael High School in 1966. She earned an AA with honors in early childhood development from the College of Marin in 1968 and completed her BA with high honors in psychology at Rhode Island College in 1974. In 1988 she completed her Masters of Divinity degree at Andover Newton Theological School, Newton, Massachusetts. She was ordained at First Baptist Church, Norwood, Massachusetts, for the American Baptist Churches, 29 May 1988, and served with her husband as pastor of churches in Massachusetts, Iowa, California, and Michigan until disability forced early retirement in 2004. Also, she served as pastor to the Chinese Community Church in Milwaukee while her husband served a nearby church. In 1992, she professed her vows in the Order of Saint Luke.
With her first husband, Michael Zifcak, of Providence, Rhode Island, she had two daughters, Lisa Zifcak Dunn (Alvin), of Washington, DC, and Christina Zifcak, of Los Angeles, CA. With her second husband, Ron, she raised her stepson, Andrew Nicholas (Kristina), of Frederick, MD.
She is survived by her husband and children, six grandchildren, a brother, Tom Freyer of San Francisco, nieces, nephews, and other family, including her cousin-who-was-like-a sister, Jean Silverman, of Newmarket, NH, plus many friends from coast-to-coast.
Before becoming a minister, she had been a geriatric nurse, a career counselor, an owner-operator of a day care center, and supervisor of college students studying for degrees in early childhood development. Since ordination she served in several associations and regions of the American Baptist Churches (ABC) as member or chair of commissions on ministerial standing and served a term as member of the midwest section of the ABC national commission on ministerial standing. In Wisconsin, she served as President of the Wisconsin ABC Ministers Council and was a volunteer assistant professor of Pastoral Care at Milwaukee Theological Institute. She wrote many articles for various publications and was a Contributing Editor for Robert Webber’s Complete Library of Christian Worship, in eight volumes, published in 1992.
In addition to her regular duties as pastor, she also established the Protestant Chaplaincy Office at Norwood Hospital, Norwood, MA, and served there as chaplain, later serving as a duty chaplain at Covenant Health Care in Saginaw, Michigan. She was a family systems counselor as well. She was a member of First Baptist Church, Midland, Michigan, and Pilgrims’ United Church of Christ, Fruitland Park, Florida. During her years in ministry she served as a role model and mentor for other women in ministry.
On April 24, there was a visitation at Pilgrims’ United Church of Christ and a funeral service with communion, followed by cremation with a private committal at a later date. Memorial gifts to the Pilgrims’ United Church memorial fund at 509 County Road 468, Fruitland Park, FL 34731-3819.