Oakwood Chattanooga
 

VISITING OAKWOOD

We’re not perfect

but fortunately

we’ve been saved by the One who is.

Welcome to Oakwood. We’re glad you’re interested in visiting our Church campus. You’ll find that we preach the transformational gospel of Jesus Christ unapologetically in our God-centered worship services. Our desire in all that we do is to bring glory to God. We hope you join us for our weekend service and more importantly, that you’ll choose to make this your home Church. You’ll learn we’re not perfect; but fortunately, we’ve been saved by the One who is.

 
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MEMBERSHIP

INTERESTED IN BECOMING A MEMBER?

Check out our Becoming a Member page by clicking the button below

 
 
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OUR DENOMINATION

 
 

Oakwood Baptist Church

is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention. Oakwood cooperates with other Southern Baptist churches on the local level (Hamilton County Baptist Association), the state level (Tennessee Baptist Convention), and the national level (Southern Baptist Convention).

Oakwood partners with Southern Baptist churches for the purpose of local and global missions and education through colleges and seminaries. Oakwood practically supports missions and education by contributing to the Cooperative Program, the Southern Baptist funding mechanism, and by participating in missions and education endeavors with Southern Baptist agencies.

Oakwood affirms historic Baptist doctrine and the statement of faith outlined in the Baptist Faith and Message.

Oakwood affirms the Baptist conviction of the local autonomy of the church. This conviction holds that each local church is responsible for its own church government, decision making, mission and ministry philosophy, and other aspects of healthy church life. A proper understanding of local autonomy of churches encourages cooperation among churches for missions.

By affiliating with the Southern Baptist Convention, Oakwood remains practically connected to the Body of Christ in our city and around the world.

 
 
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LEADERSHIP TEAM

Our leadership team recognizes the authority of God, and realizes that we are shepherds who serve under the Chief Shepherd, Jesus Christ. We desire to devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the Word. Our passion and goal is to equip the believers for the work of the ministry until we all attain maturity in the fullness of Christ.

 

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Ken Clark

Senior Pastor - oakwoodpastor@epbfi.com

Pastor Ken Clark has been in ministry for over thirty years. Serving over seventeen of those here at Oakwood Baptist.

“Oakwood is an awesome family and I love being a part of it.”

Pastor Clark has been married to his best friend, Pat, since 1990.

“We have two great sons, Nathan and Joseph. “

Nathan graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in May of 2018. He is married to Bethany and has one son, Thatcher. Joseph, my youngest son, is currently attending the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

Pastor Clark is originally from Texas and has a love for sports, especially Texas sports teams. He is an avid fan of both the Dallas Cowboys and Texas Longhorns.

“Pat tells me that it is more of a disease that I have than just being a fan.”

Pastor Clark loves pastoring, teaching, and encouraging others.

“I want to use these gifts to know God, to grow believers, and to impact our world for Christ.”

 

Grady Dishroon

Associate Pastor - oakwoodassociate@epbfi.com

“Growing up, I never dreamt that I would be where God has me now. Like many people, I thought I would get a college degree, make a lot of money, marry a beautiful woman, and have a couple of strong, athletic, handsome boys. And some of that did happen. While getting a BS degree in Computer Science at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, I met a beautiful girl named Kim. We were married in 1988 and later had a couple of strong, athletic/artistic, beautiful…girls (Kara and Kelsey). “

“I joined and began serving in the church where my wife, her father, her grandparents and her great grandparents had grown up. In fact, my children are fifth generation active members at Oakwood. I fell in love with the body of believers here at Oakwood and they quickly became a part of my family.”

“After doing pretty well in ‘my’ chosen career, God began to show me what ‘He’ had planned for me. He tugged at my heart as I worked with the children and then with the youth and in the music ministries of the church. I soon found myself serving as the interim ministers of music and youth. After a while I was asked to serve as the permanent, part-time Minister of music. “

“After six years of working two jobs, I began to question what it was that I was supposed to be doing in this world. I made the decision to resign the part-time position of Minister of Music and concentrate on my career. That seemed only logical since my career is what provided the means to the lifestyle we had grown accustomed to. “

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“But, God had other plans for my life. On the Friday immediately following the Sunday in which I resigned from the church, I was informed that multiple key positions in my company were being eliminated. My position was one of them. It was as if God was saying, “You dummy, you quit the wrong job!” It was not long before God opened the door for a full-time ministry position at the church I loved. “

“So, in February of 2004, I became the Minister of Church Growth and Development here at Oakwood and was ordained in April of 2007. Since then, I have filled in between Ministers of Music and Youth Ministers. During this time, I also received my Seminary degree from Liberty University Theological Seminary. And in April of 2017 I was officially named the Associate Pastor of Oakwood Baptist Church. I truly never saw that coming! God is Good!”

 

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Ben Rivers

Student Pastor - oakwoodyouth@epbfi.com

Pastor Ben Rivers was called to Oakwood in May 2017. This was when he and his family moved to Chattanooga from Savannah, TN and have since fell in love with the city and their church.

Pastor Ben has been married to Magen since 2009. They have four children, Molly, Nora, Annie, and Jack who are a constant source of joy in their life.

“ When I get the opportunity to get away, you will find me hiking, hunting, camping, somewhere on the water, or doing just about anything outdoors. Stick me in a hammock with a fresh cup of coffee and I’ll be on cloud 9! “

Pastor Ben has a passion for students and for seeing them come to a saving faith in Jesus Christ. Growing up, his years in youth group were the most influential years in his life.

“ I am so grateful that I had a student pastor that invested in me. I pray that I am able to have the same impact on the students that I have the privilege of leading in the Student Ministry here at Oakwood. “

 

Pepper Wilson

Children’s ministry director - oakwoodchildren@epbfi.com

Pepper joined the staff in January of 2017. Pepper has an education degree from The University of the Cumberlands and a Masters from the University of TN and she loves the Lord and kids. She is in charge of planning and coordinating all children ministries as well as teaching and nurturing the children of Oakwood using high standards and an abundance of love.

“I’m a Christ follower, wife of Tim, mom to Jamie and Jacob, and Director of Children’s Ministry at Oakwood. My family has been part of the Oakwood family since 2014 and I joined the staff in January of 2017. “

“We love our Oakwood family! God gave me a heart for children and a desire to teach. Before becoming a homeschooling mama, I taught fourth grade for several years. My desire as Children’s Director is to help equip parents, support our children’s ministry leaders, and teach our kids about Jesus and His Love.”

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Roy Smith

Music director - oakwoodworship@epbfi.com

Roy was called into the role of Music Director in April of 2017 after serving Oakwood as organist/keyboardist for 6 years. Studying and playing piano from a young age in Michigan and Montana, Roy earned a Music Education degree from Bryan College. He and his wife, Katrina, met in in the Bryan music department, and after their marriage in 2009, continue to enjoy making music together. They are blessed to have three energetic and creative children, Bennett, Lily, and Peter.

"Joining Oakwood was almost a homecoming after Katrina had been apart of the church in high school and college. The genuine love from so many in the Oakwood family was a major draw to our family in addition to the solid Biblical teaching and dedication to prayer."

Roy enjoys all things musical in addition to fine woodworking through his employment of building and restoring pipe organs and piano tuning.

"It is such a joy to worship God through the creation of vibrant and beautiful music, and to join together with brothers and sisters from all backgrounds to praise our wonderful Lord and Savior!"

 

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Bailey Bontekoe

Ministry Assistant - oakwoodsecretary@epbfi.com

Bailey has grown up at Oakwood Baptist Church, serving and being involved in many different areas over the years, in 2019 she began working in the Church Office offering assistance to the pastoral staff and Church members as needed.

Bailey’s desire is to support the ministries of Oakwood Baptist Church and to live life fully devoted to Christ as it says in Galatians 2:20

“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”     


WORSHIP AT OAKWOOD

 

WHAT SERVICES LOOK LIKE

The weekly corporate gathering of the church is a priority at Oakwood. As the Holy Spirit is present within every believer, the gathering of the body magnifies His presence and power. This is a time where God’s love is shared through service and encouragement for the rejuvenation and education of the body. God’s Word is read, preached, and put into practice. Songs of praise, thanksgiving, and rich theology are sung with an emphasis on congregational participation. We believe true worship is fundamentally an active experience of the heart and not a means to anything else. It is the personal surrender of will and authority to that of our wonderful Lord and Savior, and is evident in our lives, our faces, and the song of our heart. Through uniting our lives together in surrender to Jesus Christ, we are allowed to taste and see His power and presence, as we become His hands and feet in the world.


PREACHING

Because we believe God’s word is central to living the Christian life, we ground all our preaching and worship in the Bible. In each sermon, we consider a passage from the Bible, listening to God speak to us through the Holy Spirit. We study the word in both context and content. We then take the truths of scripture and discover together how to integrate the Word of God into our daily lives.


MUSIC

Our calling is to praise God and to inspire active and devoted believers through Gospel-saturated creativity in music and artistic expression. Emphasizing congregational participation, our music includes contemporary songs, traditional hymns and other spiritual songs. These expressions of praise and worship are based in scripture for the purpose of greater understanding and reinforcement of God's truth. Resonating the Gospel though all we do, it is our sincere hope that all will be drawn closer to Jesus, learning and rejoicing with us at His throne.


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