Christ Covenant Church, 12915 Kingston Pike, welcomes its new adult ministries director, Dr. Jim Coffield.
Coffield, previously clinical director of a counseling training program at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, Florida, joined Christ Covenant staff in June and moved to the Farragut area in July.
A Farragut High School Class of 1975 graduate, Coffield learned about the position from the Rev. Seth Hammond, Christ Covenant senior pastor.
“The senior pastor here was a student of mine,” Coffield said. “He got his master’s (degree) in divinity at RTS, and I actually did his premarital counseling, so I’ve known him for a few years.”
Hammond said he looked for an adult ministries director for several months but couldn’t find the right fit.
“I was praying hard about it, and the Lord led me to Jim, who was my professor at the seminary,” Hammond said. “I thought (Coffield’s deciding to take the job) was a longshot, but he told me, ‘Let’s talk.’”
“I always felt like the church is a first line, where people go to for help, but (churches) often have poor training and poor resources to deal with a lot of the issues that are coming across their doors,” Coffield said.
Coffield, who holds a doctorate in counseling psychology and is a licensed psychologist, has worked in seminary training pastors and licensed professional counselors.
“It just seemed like it would be exciting to go back and work in the places where I’ve been training others,” he said.
Coffield already has begun putting his skills to work by establishing a parenting class, which will look at “how imperfect parents, which we all are, can engage in positive Christian parenting” on Sunday mornings, as well as a marriage enrichment class.
And, he said, “Over the summer we have been doing another marriage class.”
He also taught a marriage seminar last January at Christ Covenant.
In his new role, Coffield said, “We’re supposed to be more like Christ. We’re supposed to be people here for others when they’re hurting — at some point everybody hurts.
“The church is supposed to be a place that comes alongside people in those times,” he added. “I would like to help this church reflect God’s heart in that way.”
Coffield said one of the reasons for returning to the area was to be closer to family roots for the sake of his son, Skylar, 30, who has special needs.