What is Stories from a Village?

Stories from a Village invites you to explore the role of faith in our lives through personal narrative and critical reflection. This website is a project launched by Stone Village Church, but we hope it reaches far beyond our walls. We chose the name in part to honor the community that inspired us, but also to acknowledge the diversity of the Christian experience.

We believe that every human being is created and gifted by God; therefore, every human being is invited to be a real part of the church, regardless of background, belief, sexual orientation, gender identity, class, age or any of the other categories people use to separate or exclude. We believe that when we share the truth of our lives, we learn that we are not alone.

The stories you’ll find here are stories of faith and doubt. Stories of struggle and triumph. Stories of marginalization and homecoming. Stories of love. We hope people of all backgrounds and traditions will read, listen, share and engage with these stories.

Creators of Stories from a Village

Ivy Lamb

I’m a writer living in Columbus with my husband, David, and our rescue dog, Brie. I work in the marketing department at a local college, and my work has been published in US Airways magazine, Columbus Monthly and Columbus Alive! Although I was baptized in the Catholic church, I’ve spent time in Lutheran, Presbyterian, Episcopalian and Methodist churches (and sometimes no church at all) over the course of my adolescence and adulthood. I found the community I was looking for at Stone Village when I attended Sunday service almost four years ago. I’m fascinated by spirituality and religion, and I’m honored to share the stories you find here at Stories from a Village. In my downtime, I enjoy hot yoga, reading too many books at once, and cooking elaborate meals in my tiny kitchen.

Steve Flowers

Married to my best friend for over 30 years, we have three great sons, a wonderful daughter-in-law, and a very sweet dog. Raised in Virginia, I also graduated from college and taught school there. I spent the first 53 years of my life in Southern Baptist churches, graduating from a Southern Baptist seminary, and serving 14 years as a youth minister with three Southern Baptist churches in Virginia and Indiana, including being ordained in 1992. After that I worked as an FBI Agent for 23 years before retiring in 2020. A spiritual journey led my wife and me to search for a church that reflected inclusiveness which resulted in us joining Stone Village Church in 2016. Contributing to SFAV is a realized passion to add to the counter-narrative against biblically-based ideologies that misrepresent the Bible and treat others unjustly.

Pastor John Wooden

I established Stone Village Church in 2011. Prior to Stone Village, I served King Avenue Church for nearly a decade.  My personal philosophy of pastoral ministry is simple, “love one another,” which is the foundation of my life and Stone Village’s life. More than once, I have said to our community at Stone Village, “You cannot love God, if you do not love your neighbor,” and so I see Stories from a Village as our faithful attempt to love and engage our neighbor. And in the process, provide our neighbor a safe and sacred space to share their story, to offer their questions, and hopefully grow closer in relationship to God and one another.