Staff & Leadership
The Reverend Vicki T. Burgess
I came to St. Philip’s in May of 2007 and have been blessed by ten years of ministry in this place. In that time, we have focused on the wonderful gifts of hospitality this parish possesses and exercises, welcoming people to Sunday worship... but also welcoming all who wish to build up the community to share our property resources with us.
I grew up moving around – my dad worked for a company that offered opportunity for promotion by transferring its management to new cities… so I lived in several places from the west to the Midwest to, finally, Tennessee. I may have lacked that highly-prized southern commodity – A Strong Sense of Place – but my home was nevertheless easy for me to identify: it was the Church. The Episcopal Church in all those places was the same… at least, the liturgy was, and my place of comfort and continuity was in a pew or Sunday School class or choir on Sunday mornings wherever I lived.
I graduated from high school outside Memphis and from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. After my All-But-Thesis master’s work there in English, I worked as a freelance technical writer, a writing instructor at Dyersburg State Community College, and as director of several non-profit agencies that serve the poor and dispossessed. It was in doing that work of serving “the least” who are Jesus’ brothers and sisters that I met Jesus face to face. They showed me more about grace and hope and dependence upon God than I ever knew before and gave me, I am sure, far more than I gave. I graduated from the University of the South School of Theology in 2003.
I'm serving the Diocese of Tennessee in these ways: as Secretary of the Diocese and as a member of the Board of Examining Chaplains, the Disciplinary Board, the Standing Committee, the diocesan Pension Fund committee, and as Spiritual Director for Tennessee Episcopal Cursillo.
I’ve been married to my husband Tom since 1975 and we have four children: Benjamin, Nicholas and our daughter-in-law, Catherine, and Sally. We have backyard chickens who give us beautiful eggs, and Gus, a big, smart cat (who is afraid of the chickens).
Assistant to the Rector for Christian Formation and Youth Ministry
I came to know and love Jesus at the age of 18. I have had a sense of God from early in life, but my teenage years were full of chaos and darkness. Shortly after my 18th birthday, I had an experience of God that led me to become a follower of Jesus of Nazareth, and I have been doing that ever since. The Christian community has always been a foundational part of my life and the Episcopal Church embodies a fullness of faith I have grown to cherish!
I am married to Janelle, my bride since 2012, and we have 3 children—Alithea Joy (5), Sophia Hope (2), and Elijah Gregory (3). As a family we enjoy swimming, wrestling, Legos, movies and popcorn!
I have been privileged to serve in youth and children's ministry at several churches and am a trained Level II catechist in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd method of forming the faith of children. I led a short-term missions trip to Southeast Asia, conducted ethnography in Austria and served in the Middle East for two years. I served as a Seminarian at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in Durham, NC and at Christ Church Cathedral in Nashville, TN.
I attended California Baptist University, receiving a BA in Christian Studies and also received a Master of Divinity degree from Duke Divinity School in Durham, NC.
It is my sincere hope that you and your family will find St. Philip's to be a place where your children and youth are cherished and welcomed and where you can grow in your faith, living more fully the life of Jesus in the world. I welcome you whole-heartedly and pray God's blessing on all you do!
Sharon Green is our office administrator. If you have any questions or need help in any sort of way, call the office 615-883-4595 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org