Rev. Dennis A. Kastens began his ministry as Senior Pastor at Peace Lutheran Church in 1995, after three years of service as Administrative Pastor at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Since his incumbency at Peace, the congregation has experienced considerable growth. His faithful shepherding has resulted in an increase in average weekly worship attendance from the 400's to approaching the 900's. In recent years, Peace has enlarged its campus with acquisition of adjoining properties, expansion of available parking, and erection of a Family Life Center (including gymnasium, youth and music facilities) to accommodate Peace's many ministries. Construction of a brand new sanctuary began in 2013. The first services in the new building were held on August 17, 2014, when the new sanctuary, featuring a Martin Ott opus 114 Pipe Organ, stained glass windows, and an expanded nave area, was dedicated. In August, 2020, Pastor Kastens began his role as Pastor Emeritus.
Pastor Kastens attended St. John's College, Winfield, Kansas, and Concordia Senior College, Ft. Wayne, Indiana prior to enrollment at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri, where he graduated with a M.Div. in 1965, and from which he received a Litt. Doctorate in 2000.
He is married to former Alice Nobe of St. Louis. She is a graduate of the University of Hawaii and holds a M.S. in Early Childhood Education from Southern Illinois University. They have two grown children who are married, and have five grandchildren.
From 1965-1979, Pastor Kastens was a missionary in Hawaii where he established several schools and congregations on the Islands of Hawaii, Maui and Oahu.
From 1979-1992, he was Pastor of Good Shepherd Lutheran in Collinsville, Illinois, where an elementary school was launched which grew to 450 pupils operative on two campuses.
He was Vice-President of the Southern Illinois District of the LCMS, from 1988-1992, having served earlier with various District auxiliaries and boards.
For a number of years he was contributor to Portals of Prayer, The Lutheran Witness, wrote curriculum materials for Synod's midweek religious education series and has had several sermon books published. While a translating attache with Dr. Dale Meyer (during his years as speaker of the international Lutheran Hour), his travels took him to the former East Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Russia. At that time he also served on the East Bloc Commission with the Board for Mission Services of the LCMS.