About Us

We are here to grow together as a community that authentically seeks a faith rooted in Jesus of Nazareth. We are Christians, and we are believers. But we are also searchers and seekers who continue to ask questions about who we are, who God is or isn’t, and what our calling is as a people of faith.

Throughout our 160 year history, our community has continually embraced social progress, forward-thinking beliefs about God, Jesus, and the world, and also been convicted of equality for all people, regardless of identity, race, gender identity, or socioeconomic status.

Our Values: Progressive Inclusivity

We are a progressive community of faith, open to new ways of being church. We seeking to welcome all as we have been welcomed by God, without judgment.

We are a progressive community of faith, open to new ways of being church. We seeking to welcome all as we have been welcomed by God, without judgment.

We are a progressive community of faith, open to new ways of being church. We seeking to welcome all as we have been welcomed by God, without judgment.

Our Values: Spiritual Grounding

We share in creating spaces in which we can be intentionally mindful and attentive to the presence of God in all its varied forms, inviting us to be courageous in pursuing justice, grounded in faith, and kind in all our deliberations.

We share in creating spaces in which we can be intentionally mindful and attentive to the presence of God in all its varied forms, inviting us to be courageous in pursuing justice, grounded in faith, and kind in all our deliberations.

We share in creating spaces in which we can be intentionally mindful and attentive to the presence of God in all its varied forms, inviting us to be courageous in pursuing justice, grounded in faith, and kind in all our deliberations.

Our Values: Every Generation

We are at our best when every generation is present, honored, and serving side by side. At the same time, we deliberately invest in fun, safe, and transformational spaces and initiatives for the next generation.

We are at our best when every generation is present, honored, and serving side by side. At the same time, we deliberately invest in fun, safe, and transformational spaces and initiatives for the next generation.

We are at our best when every generation is present, honored, and serving side by side. At the same time, we deliberately invest in fun, safe, and transformational spaces and initiatives for the next generation.

Our Values: Curious Creativity

We welcome and encourage questions and critical thinking as essential to the authentic Christian life. We embrace intentional risk-taking, being open to change and being changed, valuing new expressions of worship, witness, and life together.

We welcome and encourage questions and critical thinking as essential to the authentic Christian life. We embrace intentional risk-taking, being open to change and being changed, valuing new expressions of worship, witness, and life together.

We welcome and encourage questions and critical thinking as essential to the authentic Christian life. We embrace intentional risk-taking, being open to change and being changed, valuing new expressions of worship, witness, and life together.

Our Values: Community Focus

We continue to exist not only for ourselves, but to bring good to places of need in our community and our world, seeking to console and to be consoled, to understand and be understood, to love and be loved.

We continue to exist not only for ourselves, but to bring good to places of need in our community and our world, seeking to console and to be consoled, to understand and be understood, to love and be loved.

We continue to exist not only for ourselves, but to bring good to places of need in our community and our world, seeking to console and to be consoled, to understand and be understood, to love and be loved.

previous arrow
next arrow
Slider

The East Nashville Training Hub

In this chapter of Woodland’s life together, our church is engaged in an innovative partnership called the East Nashville Training Hub. The Training Hub, made up of mostly young adults, carry much of the day-to-day responsibilities for the church, including preaching and worship planning, service and fellowship events, and children’s ministry.  We are grateful for the energy, creativity, and engaging wisdom of this team!

Tracy Bell

Training Hub Partner for Events and Facility Support

Tracy is a Medical Aesthetician and Massage Therapist. She loves spending time with her 2 children and her family.

Tracy is joining the team as Woodland’s Facilities Partner and hopes to help build a strong bond between the church and the community.

Abby Benson

Lead Training Hub Partner for Young Adult Ministry

Born in Knoxville, Abby moved to Nashville where she became a theology student at Belmont majoring in Christian Leadership with a minor in Ethics.

Her passions include writing for her blog, getting numerous tattoos, taking care of her many house plants, and continuing to study Koine Greek. She plans on attending a theological seminary after graduation to pursue being an ordained minister with a focus on political social justice. 

Eric Holness

Lead Partner for Eastminster


Eric hails from the Golden State of California. Born into a loving family and reared in great church communities, Eric fostered a genuine love for Jesus at a young age.

Currently, Eric is enrolled at Vanderbilt Divinity School where he is furthering his ministerial aspirations and is the President and Co-Founder of Wholeness Ministries International, Inc. a nonprofit organization committed to serving churches and communities across the globe.

Paige Huggins

Lead Training Hub Partner for Children’s Ministry

Paige Huggins is a student at Belmont University and is studying Christian Theology and Psychology. She is on the Student Advisory Board for Belmont’s Theology department, loves reading and investing in friends, and also works at The Well Coffee House. Born and raised in Waco Tx, Paige moved to Nashville in 2017.

Ashlan Jackson

Training Hub Partner for Guest and Member Follow Up

Originally from Aiken, South Carolina, Ashlan attended Furman University and graduated with a degree in Health Sciences. She is passionate about global health and the eradication of disease. Ashlan also loves corgis and key lime pie.

Hannah Rae Melis

Training Hub Partner for Eastminster

Hannah Rae is from Houston, Texas and is currently studying Religion and the Arts, Writing, and Spanish at Belmont University, where she serves freshman students as a Spiritual Life Assistant.

She loves reading, piano playing, spending time with friends, and trying to find the best Mexican food in town.

Emily Martin

Lead Training Hub Partner for Woodland

Born and raised in Nashville, Emily graduated from Furman University where she earned a degree in Sociology & Studio Art, served as a mentor for middle school girls, and spent summers working with the youth group at First Presbyterian Church and Daystar Counseling Ministries.

For the last year, she has been working as an executive recruiter with Elevation Search Solutions helping emerging market companies build out their teams.

RJ McDowell

Utility Infielder


A transplant from Columbia, South Carolina, RJ moved to Nashville to pursue a Master’s in Music at Belmont University. After graduation, RJ was offered a job at Belmont University in the Music Library where he assists students and faculty with their music research. He also enjoys teaching and playing the viola around the greater Nashville area. 

Jude R.

Training Hub Partner for Worship and Special Projects

Jude recently graduated from Middle Tennessee State University, where he studied English with an emphasis on contemporary global literature and women’s and gender studies. After using this background to clarify his passion for social justice and community activism, he is now pursuing a Master of Social Work at MTSU.

Currently, Jude splits his time working as an associate for the Rutherford County Library System and a tutor at MTSU’s Writing Center. His interests include cats, coffee, Kermit memes, and reading. Don’t hesitate to recommend him your favorite book!

Scott Sauers

Lead Training Hub Partner for Eastminster

A recent transplant from his hometown of Baltimore, Maryland Scott has been a music ministry leader for the greater part of a  decade. With a B.S. degree of Music and a history of leadership and participation in the life of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Scott looks to work with churches integrating change and building up new programs!

He currently works for the The Escape Game as a Guest Experience Coordinator and lives locally here in Nashville. Never failing to greet you with a joke and a warm hello, Scott is ready (at the drop of a hat) for good conversations over coffee and a good board game. 

Sara Staats

Training Hub Partner for Social Media

Sara recently moved back to the Nashville area after graduating from The University of Tampa. She studied Marketing, along with New Media Production.

Sara currently works at Aroluxe Marketing in Brentwood as a Social Media Strategist and handles all things digital for Woodland. Don’t be alarmed if you see her taking pictures of you during service. It’s for the Woodland Facebook and Instagram pages!

*Ministry Architects staff member.