The Sound of Ministry

The Sound of Ministry

Most people know the homeless can go to Nashville Rescue Mission and receive food, clothing, and shelter. The Mission does that and so much more. And now it sounds even better thanks to Frank Baird, Assistant Professor in Sound Reinforcement at MTSU.

“My wife and I have been financial supporters of the Mission for over 13 years,” said Frank. “But I never really thought much about volunteering there. It wasn’t until my friend Chris Kearney started working at the Mission a few years ago that I learned of this great opportunity to use my time and talents to improve the quality of the chapel experience for guests while providing my college students with some real-world application of what they are learning.”

Both professional touring musicians and live sound engineers, Chris and Frank have known each other for over 15 years. Frank’s experiences as a sound engineer touring with Elton John and Madonna gave him great insight into the technical aspects of running live sound. He’s also installed sound equipment for churches all over Nashville, and managed a theatre at Belmont University where he supported more than 10,000 live events.

“Frank is one of the best sound engineers I know,” said Chris Kearney. “Sharing the hope of Jesus to all who enter our doors is foundational to the Mission’s ministry. It’s essential that guests can hear the message shared during each nightly chapel service. With Frank’s help, the quality of the sound in the chapel has been greatly elevated, and it makes for a much better and richer chapel experience for our guests.”

“Serving at the Mission has changed me,” said Frank. “It’s something I talk about in my class and have incorporated it into the curriculum. Each semester, students are required to complete three homework assignments outside of the classroom that involve running sound for a live show. Running sound for Nashville Rescue Mission’s nightly chapel service is one of their options. This exposes students to a worthy ministry and is a wonderful opportunity for MTSU students to come to Nashville to serve, learn, and hone their skills before they graduate.”

“I’m so grateful to be doing this,” said Frank. “I believe in what Nashville Rescue Mission stands for. I can see that people are genuinely being helped. Not only can I give back, but this also gives our students an opportunity to serve the Mission community and prepare them as future leaders.”

Want to use your unique skills and talents for good? Check out volunteer opportunities at the Mission:

Homeless Not Hopeless: Kenneth’s Story

Homeless Not Hopeless: Kenneth’s Story

Still in his hospital gown, Kenneth arrived at Nashville Rescue Mission on October 24, 2017, by way of discharge from a local hospital. He had no family, no money, and nowhere to go—he was homeless.

Kenneth is 59 years old, and this is the first time he’s experienced homelessness. In addition to high blood pressure and diabetes, he has dementia.

How did Kenneth end up homeless?

“I was born and raised in Nashville,” shared Kenneth. “We lived near Old Hickory Lake on ten acres of land. Growing up, it was just me, and my mom and dad. I was adopted and didn’t have siblings. I never married, and I don’t have any children. I had a great life growing up. We were in church every Sunday. I was a good student and graduated a year early from high school. I studied math at Nashville Tech but didn’t finish. Over the years I found work as a welder, a CNC operator, a truck driver and an instructor, and a machinist. I’m a jack of all trades.”

Once his parents passed away, Kenneth was on his own. And after a bad motorcycle accident, Kenneth was prescribed a painkiller and developed an addiction to Dilaudid. His habit soon escalated and consumed him. Eventually, he ran out of money. Unable to work or care for himself, Kenneth landed himself a stay at a local hospital, and upon discharge, with nowhere else to go, he was taken to Nashville Rescue Mission.

What about Government assistance?

Although Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid provide a safety net for some, not all people live out their final years with a secure, stable place to live. People who are homeless and living with cognitive impairment often fall through the cracks.

“If you’re experiencing homelessness you’re thinking about where you’re going to get your next meal and how you’re going to keep yourself safe,” said Rev. Glenn Cranfield, president and CEO of Nashville Rescue Mission. “You’re not thinking about how you’re going to refrigerate your medication or how you’re going to get to your next appointment. For those who live on the streets or in a shelter—getting discharged from the hospital often means losing their meds, struggling to clean their wounds, or failing to make the specialist appointment across town. Others will get even sicker. Some will go back to the emergency room and start the process all over again. We need to work together to ensure our homeless neighbors have access to services and support that meet their needs.”

Adding dementia to the mix only complicates matters.

Dementia is a complex chronic condition caused by one or more of a large number of illnesses affecting the brain. It’s a devastating condition that robs people of their abilities and memories. It’s cloaked in stigma and misunderstanding. It isolates people from social networks and carries significant economic consequences.

How does the Mission help?

“Serving the emergency needs of those without a home with compassion, respect, and resources is the reason we exist,” said Cranfield. “Our staff members are known for going above and beyond, especially in situations such as this. Someone like Kenneth requires a little extra care. He needs someone to help him remember his appointments, so he doesn’t land back in the hospital. It can be a costly and vicious cycle. We hope once Kenneth establishes a source of income, potentially through disability, then he can transition into supportive housing and no longer be homeless.”



“The Mission has been a blessing to me,” says Kenneth. “I know I couldn’t do any of this on my own. Everyone here has been so kind to me. Ken Engle (case manager at the Mission) has gone above and beyond to help me. He’s made sure I’ve gotten to my appointments. He connected me with a disability advocate, who is helping me with that paperwork. Once that’s approved, Ken is going to help me get into housing. I know he’s younger than me, but he’s been like a father-figure. I appreciate him so much. Even as low as I’ve gotten, I’ve never lost my will to live,” said Kenneth. “I’m no longer drinking or addicted to drugs. Thanks to Nashville Rescue Mission, I’m getting the help I need, and I’ve found hope for tomorrow. I’m extremely grateful.”


If you would like to provide a safe place to sleep, hot meals to eat, and hope for a better life for Kenneth and others like him please click here.

Matty Mullins

Matty Mullins

I started a hair product company a couple of years ago called On Point Pomade. We had a surplus of about 2,000 combs at the end of 2017, so I asked around to find out which homeless shelter would have the best use for them. I quickly heard back from multiple people recommending Nashville Rescue Mission. I was familiar with the name but had never learned about all that they do. I made a call and was so happy to find out they would be able to use the combs in the hygiene packs they offer to anyone who stays there.

They invited me down to drop off the combs and take a tour of their campus. While walking the halls and hearing the statistics and success stories, I was floored by the overwhelming amount hope that is being offered there in so many different ways. It was incredible to see it all in person, meet some staff, and hear about how they are serving those in need in the Nashville area.

Seeing first hand the thousands of meals and shelter they provide EACH DAY for hundreds of people who stay there was enough to make me well up with tears of joy, but Nashville Rescue Mission is offering so much more than just food and shelter—education, freedom from addiction, and most importantly eternal life through a relationship with Christ!

There’s a song on my most recent solo album called “The Best Is Yet To Come.” It’s about the assurance we have as believers, knowing our future is not determined by our past or our present, but by the promises given to us by God. So no matter what our current situation looks like, we can keep our eyes on Jesus and know that we are Kingdom bound!

I’ve thought about Nashville Rescue Mission every time I’ve sung that song since my visit. The Mission is serving “the least of these,” to provide them with what they need here and now, and to teach them biblical truths that extend far beyond this lifetime. I’m so grateful for the servant hearts on staff at Nashville Rescue Mission.

This is love in action.

THIS is hope.


As frontman for Memphis May Fire, one of the premiere bands in the metal-core genre, Matty Mullins encourages crowds at large secular music festivals worldwide with a mixture of relatable personal confessions and faith-based positivity. He’s blessed with one of the most recognizable and vital voices in alternative youth culture, helping his band garner rock radio play, millions of YouTube views, magazine covers around the world, and over two million followers on social media, while simultaneously offering an even fuller expression of his vibrant faith as a newly emerging CCM solo artist.