“What would happen if churches stopped making decisions based on their own survival and instead started giving themselves away in love?”

Erik Gernand

Our Leadership

Knowing Love and Sharing It

Ciara Cunningham

Children & Families Pastor

Ciara Cunningham

Ciara Cunningham is our Children & Families Pastor. She brings a great love for our children and leads a fabulous team of volunteers who are glad to make the children's’ experience the highlight of their week. Ciara is a graduate of Trevecca Nazarene University and Nazarene Theological Seminary and is an ordained Elder in the Church of the Nazarene. She is married to Aaron and they have two children: Carter and Lanie.

Erik Gernand

Lead Pastor

Erik Gernand

Erik has been the Lead Pastor of Real Life Community since 2008. He formerly served as Young Adult/Preaching Pastor in Jackson, MI. Erik is an ordained elder in the Church of the Nazarene and holds a Bachelor's Degree from Olivet Nazarene University, an M.A. in Theology from ONU and an M.Div. from Nazarene Theological Seminary. Erik is passionate about people coming to know a God who is passionate about them. He is married to Ashley (our Worship Leader) and together they have three amazing children.

Ashley Gernand

Worship Pastor

Ashley Gernand

Our worship leader is Erik’s wife, Ashley Gernand. Ashley gradutated from Olivet Nazarene University with a degree in Music and has been leading worship in church since 2002. She is a gifted leader and a wonderful mom to Anna, Grey and Boone.

Sarah Comer

Connections Pastor

Sarah Comer

Sarah Comer is our Connections Pastor. Sarah brings a big heart for community and helping new people get involved in the life of the church. She's working to enhance our community, connectedness and communication with one another at Real Life. Sarah is a graduate of Trevecca Nazarene University and is married to Tyler.

Sam Hattaway

Youth Leader

Sam Hattaway

Sam Hattaway is our Youth Pastor with special responsibilities for leading Sunday nights and planning events for our Murfreesboro Nazarene churches. Sam is a recent graduate of Trevecca Nazarene University and is a District Licensed Minister in the Church of the Nazarene. He has a great heart for seeing teens thrive in their relationship with Jesus and with each other.

Clayton Williams

Board Secretary

Clayton Williams

Clayton Williams has been a member of Real Life Community since the beginning. He has served in just about every ministry area, but regularly helps lead worship on the guitar on Sundays. Clayton is currently serving as the Board Secretary for Real Life, helping to provide leadership and direction to that group. He is married to Kim and together they have three wonderful children.

Brandi Ussery

NYI President

Brandi Ussery

Brandi has been a devoted member to Real Life for several years. She helps to lead our youth in their events and organization as the NYI President. Brandi is married to Tony and mother to Alexis, Grace, Carly, and Easton.

Teresa Hodge

NMI President

Teresa Hodge

Teresa Hodge is our NMI (Nazarene Missions International) President. She and her husband Jim have served the church in pastoral ministry throughout their lives and are now retired. Teresa still serves as our District NMI President and helps facilitate our congregation's engagement in worldwide missions.

Rich Hanson

Building and Grounds

Rich Hanson

Rich Hanson is our Building & Grounds director. He oversees the facilities and helps organize teams of volunteers for projects to help maintain and improve the place God has given us.