The Tullahoma Community and King’s Cross Church congregation will say a bittersweet farewell to Phillip Moody and his wife, Lori, as the couple prepares to leave Tullahoma after 23 years and embark on a new journey in ministry.
A native of Louisville, Kentucky, Moody said he has been involved in the church all of his life and felt the call to join the ministry as early as high school.
“My father was a bi-vocational music director in a general Baptist church, so I guess I was exposed to church life or church ministry first through my parents,” he said. “My mother was also as involved as my father was in the church. It’s a calling from God. That happened while my wife and I were in junior college and you just know. I could also say it was in high school, now that I think about it. But it’s just when you feel in your heart that you are supposed to go into vocational ministry and follow where ever God leads.”
The couple moved to Tullahoma in 1995, where Moody took a position as minister of education at First Baptist Church. Nine months later, he joined New Baptist Church, which eventually became King’s Cross Church.
For the next two decades, Moody served in several ministerial positions at the church, including as minister of Christian nurturing, family minister, Children’s minister and his current position as congregational life minister.
The couple raised their son, Luke, and daughter, Hannah, in Tullahoma. Although his children are now grown, Moody credits the town with being an ideal place to raise a family.
“It’s been very sweet. It’s really neat when you get to come to a town, especially with a young family, because you are instantly put into circles and groups pretty quick and they get to know you. Tullahoma is a great town to raise a family,” Moody said.
Looking be closer to their children and other family members, the couple are heading to Lexington, Kentucky where Moody will take a chaplain residency with Lexington VA Healthcare.
“I’ll be there for a year for what is called a chaplain residency,” he said. “So I will be, in my last 12 years of vocational ministry, in a medical facility. We really feel like God is moving us in this direction.”
Moody said while he is excited to begin a new chapter in his family’s life, leaving Tullahoma and the church family the Moodys have found here is bittersweet.
“I will miss the people. There are a lot of sweet people at King’s Cross and in Tullahoma and I wish we could take them all with us,” he said.
A farewell reception will be held for The Moody family from 1-3 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 16, at King’s Cross Church, 222 Turkey Creek Road. The public is invited to attend.
Kali Bradford can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.