A staff of chaplains represents several faiths on campus including Baptist, Episcopal, Jewish (Chabad & Hillel), Presbyterian, Reformed University Fellowship, Catholic, and United Methodist. Each chaplain or director provides worship opportunities, counseling, study, action, retreats, and fellowship for his/her constituency. Together the staff of chaplains cooperates with the Office of Religious Life in offering programs of ecumenical and interfaith interest to the Vanderbilt community.
Affiliated Chaplains and Directors
Father John Sims Baker
University Catholic Chaplain
University Catholic exists to glorify God primarily by serving the sacramental and spiritual needs of the Catholic students of the university. In fulfilling this end, the traditions of the Church in worship, spirituality, and the intellectual life are the sources. Fr. John Sims Baker, a priest of the Diocese of Nashville, is the chaplain, who coordinates the spiritual activities and serves the Catholic student organization.
Rev. William S. Croft
Stacey is a Texan who moved to Nashville from Jackson, Mississippi, where he received his degree from Reformed Theological Seminary. It was during his time in undergrad at Baylor University when Stacey and his wife Megan met on a blind date. After graduation he was the youth director at Christ the King Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Houston for two years. Stacey went on to be the youth director at Park Cities Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Dallas before moving to Jackson to finish seminary. Ministering to college students has been a love for Stacey and Megan for quite some time. They are thankful to be on the campus of Vanderbilt doing what the Lord has truly called them to do.
Check out RUF’s page on Facebook!
Ari Dubin, M.A.
The Ben Schulman Center for Jewish Life on campus is a vibrant community that provides many opportunities for Jewish experience – spiritual, intellectual, social, communal. We are committed to the diversity of religious expression within Judaism, and we embrace and seek interfaith understanding among the many traditions represented at Vanderbilt.
See Ari’s Facebook Page.
Rabbi Joshua Barton
Affiliated Hillel Chaplain
Rabbi Joshua Barton is the Assistant Director and Campus Rabbi for Vanderbilt Hillel. As an undergrad here at Vanderbilt, Joshua earned his BA, magna cum laude, in Religious Studies and Political Science. From there, he would study at University of Haifa, The Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies and finally The Jewish Theological Seminary of America where he would earn his MA and be ordained as a Rabbi. Having experience ranging from Catholic Charities to teaching Midrash and Judaic Studies, Rabbi Joshua brings wonderful experience and life to Vanderbilt’s campus.
United Methodist Campus Minister
Heath is an ordained pastor in the United Methodist Church. He has received a Master of Arts in Philosophy from the University of Arkansas, and a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University. Before moving to Nashville in 2013, Heath worked in several campus ministries and churches over the past fifteen years, in Texas and Arkansas. He recently authored his first book, Flames of Love: Hell and Universal Salvation. Heath is glad to get to be the campus pastor for the Wesley Fellowship, which seeks to empower emerging adults on campus to become thoughtful and active followers of Christ.
UKIRK Presbyterian Minister to Belmont and Vanderbilt Universities
I was born in our nation’s capital and I lived in various cities in Florida but primarily grew up around the lakes, where I fell in love with rowing. I competed nationally and rowed at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where I majored in religious studies and adolescent health. During and after college, I worked for YoungLife, focusing on hospitality, and ministry to both youth and young adults, and I lived in Colorado. The seasonal way of life in the Rocky Mountains gave me time to travel and I drove all over the country, as well as backpacking with friends throughout Europe and Australia, and New Zealand on my own. I went to seminary at Duke, where I focused on pastoral care, social issues and worship. I have had great experiences working with people living with HIV/AIDs and at a wonderful Presbyterian church in Raleigh, where I continued to serve after graduation. I most recently finished a year as a chaplain at a children’s hospital, which gave me the hours and space to finish a certification for chaplaincy and pastoral counseling, while doing some pastoral supply work in my home presbytery. I recently moved to Nashville and look forward to getting to know the city and its people. Feel free to reach out to me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rabbi Shlomo Rothstein
Rabbi Rothstein was raised in Baltimore, MD, the oldest of eight children. He traveled the world for school, living in Chicago, Montreal, Melbourne, and New York before landing in Tennessee.
The Chabad Jewish Student Center at Vanderbilt University is based on the ideology of Chabad and fueled by the inspiration and teachings of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, which have at their foundation the encompassing mitzvah “to love every Jew as one loves himself” and the mandate to concretize that love with Acts of Kindness and Mitzvahs. It’s our belief that every individual Jew has an indispensable contribution to make to the totality of the Jewish people. Chabad welcomes all Jews at their own pace and comfort level through innovative educational programs in all areas of Jewish life.
Becca Stevens, M.Div.
University Episcopal Chaplain
St. Augustine’s Chapel on the Vanderbilt Campus is a vibrant and hard working community of people that consists of students, faculty, and staff as well as about 200 people from the greater Nashville Community. We provide opportunities for worship, fellowship, learning and outreach to anyone who is interested.
Baptist Collegiate Ministry (BCM) exists to help students and the university community know God through Bible study, worship and discipleship and to make God known through fellowship, community ministry, outreach and missions. Come join us on Thursday nights at 8:15 at the BCM for our weekly worship/Bible study or just stop by the building. Our doors are always open to you. Grace and peace.
Check out BCM’s page on Facebook.