Faith Co-op is a faith-based initiative that equips Christians to steward their vocations for the good of Chattanooga and the glory of God’s kingdom. Through fellowships, courses, events, and resources, we help leaders connect their faith with their work for the flourishing of our city.
For some, work is simply a means to a paycheck, drudgery to be endured until retirement. For others, work is their source of identity and self-worth. Too many of us are disconnected from the reality that our work is part of God’s plan to redeem, renew, and bless his creation.
We believe that helping Christians in the marketplace recover a robust theology of vocation is the best starting point for making our city a more equitable, humanizing place—and is a powerful witness of our faith in action.
To join God in the renewal of Chattanooga by restoring the connections between faith, work, culture, and community
Everything we believe about work and culture is rooted in God’s design for the world and the renewal of all things in Christ.
We believe one of the most effective ways to impact our city is by helping Christians understand how their vocations fit into God’s kingdom purposes.
We aim to join God in the economic, cultural, and spiritual renewal of Chattanooga and the flourishing of its people.
We believe wisdom for daily living comes from an understanding of the biblical story, and specifically what it says about God’s plan for the world.
We provide opportunities for Christians from different professional, denominational, and cultural backgrounds to learn a shared kingdom language that promotes gospel-centered partnerships.
We challenge Christians to understand, in a deeper way, who they are in Christ and what it means to reimagine their work as sacred opportunities to serve the Lord.
City Service & Renewal
We believe Christians must be aware of the places they are called to live and look for ways to nurture flourishing through involvement, sacrifice, and service.
Jonathan has spent most of his career as an experiential educator in high schools, colleges, and the professional sphere. He has a passion for helping people see how the Gospel impacts all aspects of life. He has a B.A. in Biblical & Theological Studies from Covenant College and an M.A. in Higher Education from Geneva College.
CHATTANOOGA FELLOWS PROGRAM DIRECTOR
Ralston is a native Chattanoogan and graduate of McCallie. He attended Washington & Lee University and received a degree in Religion. The following year he participated in the Trinity Fellows (Charlottesville, VA) where he also met his wife Elle. For the last 5 years Ralston has worked in schools as a teacher. He is currently working on a masters in theology from Gordon Conwell Seminary. Ralston and Elle are the proud parents of Mallie.
Dr. Andy Cornett
MAIN + MARKET FELLOWS LEAD PROFESSOR
Andy is the Associate Pastor for Family Ministries at Signal Mountain Presbyterian Church. He began in student ministry after graduating from Wheaton College in 1997 and has stayed vocationally within the church ever since. He completed his Master of Divinity at Fuller Seminary in 2009 and also a Doctor of Ministry in 2020. Andy has a passion for where and how the people of the church faithfully meet culture through work, family, education, government, neighborhoods, and more. He loves the Chattanooga area, particularly the outdoors, and is often found at some local spot doing study, sermon prep, or meeting with people.
EVENTS AND OPERATIONS COORDINATOR
Mel has spent the past 7 years in Chattanooga working in the software industry holding various roles within marketing including events, digital marketing, and demand generation. She attended the University of Georgia and received a BA in Public Relations. She has a passion for spreading joy and is honored to use her gifts and experiences to serve working professionals here in Chattanooga.
Although Chattanooga has been described as one of the most Bible-believing cities in the nation, our theology of work is broken. Scriptural guidance about vocation and calling is forgotten or misunderstood.
In 2018, two men—Dr. L. Clark Taylor and Bill Stiles—set out to change that by founding Faith Co-op (formerly the Chattanooga Institute for Faith and Work).
Taylor, a retired health care executive who became a United Methodist pastor late in life, believes that for too many people of faith, there is a divide between what is sacred in the church and what is secular in the workplace. Stiles, a 40-year marketing veteran and Baptist Sunday school teacher, heartily agrees. They both contend that the cultural divide of faith from work means there is less meaning, less joy and a lesser quality of life for individuals and the community.
“When followers of Christ are clear about the overarching impact of their vocation, career path and job, they should be motivated to do their work with excellence, in a distinctively Christian manner, with a profound impact on community and the world culture.”
-Dr. L. Clark Taylor
In recent years, Faith Co-op has added even more high-impact programs, like the Chattanooga Fellows and Faith Driven Entrepreneur and Investor, to help marketplace leaders integrate their faith and work.
As our organization continues to grow and impact more lives, we can’t wait to see how God will use his people for the renewal of Chattanooga.