With everything that 2020 threw at us—I praise God every day for the faithfulness of our church! We have continued to grow and connect, whether online or in person. People have shared stories of hope, and we stood alongside one another through all the changes of this season.
In 2020, we celebrated 10 years of faithful ministry through our Station Hill campus. In response to the aftermath of the Nashville tornado, we planted a Community Grove at our Lockeland Springs campus to replace trees that were damaged. We also partnered with local mission organizations such as Project Connect and Grace Works, as well as established coat closets and food pantries at several of our campuses. Together, we encouraged the greater Middle Tennessee community and have trusted the Holy Spirit with the results.
As we continue to serve one another in 2021, let’s remember to always engage others with the whole gospel of Jesus Christ, anywhere, anytime, with anybody. Find the places where God wants to use us and then get there!
Remember, God is still up something. Be sure you’re right in the middle of it!
2020 was a year we all will remember. While we faced unpredictable circumstances and all the joys and pains that accompanied it, our church body met these with the hope of Christ and attitude of service. Our eight campuses have continued to share the gospel and have formed new and creative ways of loving and serving our community. Please review the 2020 Annual Report to learn more about the accomplishments of the past year and pray to discern how God is calling you to engage others with the gospel in 2021. Thank you.
We celebrated our 10th anniversary in February 2020. With the constant prayers and support of our entire church family and by making much of the whole gospel of Jesus Christ, The Church at Station Hill, which started as a seedbed Bible Study 12 years ago, now has over 1,200 members.
We’ve baptized over 400 people. We’ve seen 43 children brought home through our families‘ adoptions. We have 39 families involved with adopting, fostering, and bringing vulnerable children into loving homes as safe families. We’ve sent 40 members out to plant a church in the College Grove/Chapel Hill community, later becoming Grove Hill Church which is thriving with 250 average attendees.
We’ve sent hundreds of members on dozens of mission journeys to serve all over the world in places like Guatemala, Kenya, and Nepal with our mission partners. We have two families serving with the International Mission Board, and we are cultivating more people to go live on mission among the nations.
We don’t point out any of this to brag on us, but simply to point out what God can do when a bunch of His people decides to live on mission together in their own community.
God knew that food insecurity would be a great concern for our community this past year, and He already had a plan for it! In March of 2020, we opened a food pantry—the week before the COVID-19 quarantine first began. In May, we reopened with new COVID-19 responsible procedures in place, and in the last seven months of 2020, we distributed a little over 96,000 pounds of food. In addition, we have fed over 2,545 individuals this year.
We have also given out 500 boxes full of produce on our special Monday produce days. We have also hosted four big food giveaway events on our campus. We have connected with seven schools in our areas, where we are partnering with guidance counselors and teachers to connect food to families in need. We gave away 21,000 pounds of food to help support other ministries’ and campuses’ food initiatives. We are looking forward to seeing what God has planned for 2021!
Project Connect Nashville (PCN) became an official ministry partner at Woodbine in January of 2020. Functioning within COVID-19 protocols on a very limited basis, PCN ministered to over 30 different people and families in 2020. One particular PCN client is a man named Darby, who has an incredible testimony of how the Lord Jesus is working in his life. Like every PCN client, Darby has quite a bit of pain, hurt, and trauma in his life; however, trusting in the Holy Spirit, he has faithfully kept his eyes on Jesus, walking through Project Connect’s discipleship program and doing the “hard work” required in order to become free from his past. It has NOT been an easy road, but Darby is an example of the power of a transformed life in Christ.
Once we “opened our doors” for on-campus worship, Darby quickly jumped into the life of Woodbine, serving regularly as an usher on Sunday mornings, participating in a life group, and also becoming a member. Darby is seen weekly showing the love of Jesus and also walking alongside current PCN clients who are where he was just a year ago. He truly is a disciple making disciples.
On March 3, 2020, a devastating tornado destroyed much of our community. In the days and weeks immediately following the disaster, we became a hub for the relief and recovery efforts in East Nashville. Well over 1,000 volunteers came through and were sent out into the community. We assisted with relief efforts at over 600 different homes and served countless meals to families who had been affected (hundreds a day for over two weeks!).
We have also planted 24 trees to replace some of the trees our community lost and to create a place for our congregation and neighbors to gather, rest, reflect, and pray. This new community space will be called The Grove.
“Well, a couple of Sundays ago, I accepted Jesus into my heart!” -Annie
We met a local elementary school’s landscaping needs to provide a fresh and warm welcome for students and teachers returning in the fall. Cleaning supplies were also collected and donated to the school. Additionally, we provided meal baskets for families in need during the Thanksgiving season and cared for two families in transitions, providing them with clothes, shoes, coats, gift cards, and other needed items.
During the Christmas Project, we partnered with the Tennessee Alliance for Kids to provide youth who aged out of the foster care system with stockings containing gift cards, games, and other stocking stuffers, along with needed household goods. We collected 41 full stockings and 57 laundry baskets containing cleaning supplies, detergents, blankets, devotionals, and other items and supplies. We partnered with the Nolensville Coat Closet and Food Pantry to provide more than 50 coats to distribute to children in need.
A team from our church helped with flood cleanup and recovery efforts in Nolensville after the flooding in September. Our Life Groups went throughout their communities to pray during the Prayer Walk event.
Quarantine has been lonely for many, but being able to hear from others that you are loved, never alone, and sent has meant so much to our widows and homebound members. Our nurture team, deacons, and staff made over 3,580 connections through calling, texting, and sending cards. We were also able to provide ways for small groups of quarantined members to gather safely and sing praises to God. We wanted our church members to be seen and loved through song.
The Church at Avenue South started seven different Life Groups and five different Bible Reading Groups in 2020. We have added 42 different people to our Mentor Relationship Ministry, meeting people where they are as they battle anxieties in the midst of the pandemic. We have also created a College Leadership Cohort consisting of eight student leaders. These students are actively discipling and pouring into their peers, multiplying discipleship away from just staff, and equipping students.
Nina Broadway had a significant gospel conversation with her sister, Marie. In early September, Marie had a very serious stroke and went to rehab. She struggled with the thought of possibly never seeing her loved ones again. That is when Nina talked to her about the reward of Jesus and the eternity we can have in heaven. Marie responded, “I want to go.” The sisters continued their conversation, and Marie gave her heart to Jesus. On October 18, 2020, God took Marie home. She was a 10-day-old Christian at 91 years of age. From her story, we are encouraged to never give up hope!