The Reverend Susan Thisell

Senior Pastor

Kristin Kennedy

Administrative Assistant

Kristin has served as Messiah's Administrative Assistant since September, 1995. A dairy farmer and piano teacher/organist’s daughter, Kristin was raised in the Rio Grande Valley of South Texas. She is a cradle Lutheran who always wanted to work in the church—which isn’t surprising since her family lived across the street from her home congregation where her mother was the organist.

John Brock

Interim Organist & Director of MUSIC

Following the retirement of its Director of Music in early 2022, Messiah is currently searching for a new Organist and Director of Music. The choir continues to sing under the direction of our Interim Organist and Director of Music, John Brock, an Emeritus Professor of Music at UT who once before served as Messiah’s Director of Music and Organist.

Mary Sophia Hawks, RN, BSN, FCN


Mary Sophia Hawks has been the Parish (Faith Community) Nurse at Messiah since January 2012. A native of Knoxville and child of Messiah, she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Augustana College, and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. Her continuing education includes Advanced Pediatric Assessment, NICHE Geriatric Resource Nurse Course, Foundations of Faith Community Nursing, and multiple continuing education credits.

Mary Sophia serves with visitation of hospitalized and shut-in members, education, Messenger articles, walking with members through changes in living settings, and attending MD appointments. Grief support, caregiver support and health fairs are also part of her ministry.

Doug Mason

Volunteer Accountant