Grace Church Deaf Ministry History
God made it clear that He was calling Grace Church to establish a Deaf ministry! So one woman with ‘rusty' sign skills received tutoring from a Deaf friend and began to teach a basic beginner sign class while she entered intense ASL training through an interpreter degree program. Three more people from that first sign class pursued an interpreting degree also and the group PRAYED like crazy. In the beginning, the ministry served one or two Deaf people while many hearing people at Grace learned sign in the ongoing sign classes. Three more people from the classes became degreed interpreters so that now Grace has 6 highly trained professional interpreters. Soon, the ministry began to experience amazing growth!
Turning the Ministry into a Deaf Church
Signs of Grace Deaf Church Partners with Grace Church
Pastor Joe Dixon has accepted the call to serve as full-time pastor and church planter to turn the Deaf ministry at Signs of Grace into an independent Deaf church in 2014. Joe and his wife, Amanda, have four children: a 7 year old daughter and an 14year old son, and a pair of 1 year old twins. Joe (born Deaf) attended Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama and graduated with a degree in English. He also has a Masters degree in Counseling Psychology from Lipscomb University. Amanda (hearing) and Joe met at Lipscomb University. Amanda also has a Masters degree in Counseling Psychology and will be involved in hospitality and women's ministry. They have been married 10 years.
Experience? Pastor Joe served as Pastor in Residence for Brentwood Baptist Deaf Church in Nashville for 3 years. When his training at Brentwood was complete, he became a traveling pastor to churches in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Georgia. He also served as a Vocational Rehabilitation counselor for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing for the state of Tennessee. Signs of Grace and Grace Church are excited to welcome the Dixons and look forward to God's new adventure as Signs of Grace becomes an independent Deaf fellowship partnered with Grace Church!
Our Statement of Faith...
Jesus Christ is the true God and the true man. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He died upon the cross, the Just for the unjust, as a substitutionary sacrifice, and all who believe in Him are justified on the ground of His shed blood. He arose from the dead according to the Scriptures. He is now at the right hand of Majesty on high as our great High Priest. He will come again to establish His kingdom of righteousness and peace. (Philippians 2:6-11, Luke 1:34–38, I Peter 3:18, Hebrews 2:9, Romans 5:9, Acts 2:23–24, Hebrews 8:1, Matthew 26:64)
The Holy Spirit is a divine person, sent to indwell, guide, teach, empower the believer, and convince the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. (John 14:15–18, John 16:13, Acts 1:8, John 16:7–11)
The Old and New Testaments, inerrant as originally given, were verbally inspired by God and are a complete revelation of His will for the salvation of men. They constitute the divine and only rule of Christian faith and practice. (2 Peter 1:20–21, 2 Timothy 3:15–16)
Man was originally created in the image and likeness of God: he fell through disobedience, incurring thereby both physical and spiritual death. All men are born with a sinful nature, are separated from the life of God, and can be saved only through the atoning work of the Lord Jesus Christ. The portion of the unrepentant and unbelieving is existence forever in conscious torment; and that of the believer, in everlasting joy and bliss. (Genesis 1:27, Romans 3:23, 1 Corinthians15:20–23, Revelation 21:8, Revelation 21:1–4)
Salvation has been provided through Jesus Christ for all men; and those who repent and believe in Him are born again of the Holy Spirit, receive the gift of eternal life, and become the children of God. (Titus 3:4–7)
It is the will of God that each believer should be filled with the Holy Spirit and be sanctified wholly, being separated from sin and the world and fully dedicated to the will of God, thereby receiving power for holy living and effective service. This is both a crisis and a progressive experience wrought in the life of the believer subsequent to conversion. (1 Thessalonians 5:23, Acts 1:8, Romans 6:1–14)
Provision is made in the redemptive work of the Lord Jesus Christ for the healing of the mortal body. Prayer for the sick and anointing with oil are taught in the Scriptures and are privileges for the Church in this present age. (Matthew 8:16–17, James 5:13–16)
The Church consists of all those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, are redeemed through His blood, and are born again of the Holy Spirit. Christ is the Head of the Body, the Church, which has been commissioned by Him to go into all the world as a witness, preaching the gospel to all nations. The local church is a body of believers in Christ who are joined together for the worship of God, for edification through the Word of God, for prayer, fellowship, the proclamation of the gospel, and observance of the ordinances of Baptism and the Lord's Supper. (Ephesians 1:22–23, Matthew 28:19–20, Acts 2:41–47)
The Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ is imminent and will be personal, visible, and premillennial. This is the believer's blessed hope and is a vital truth which is an incentive to holy living and faithful service. (Hebrews 10:37, Luke 21:27, Titus 2:11–14)