Meet Our Church Staff
Rev. Raymond Thomas

Rev. Dr. Raymond S. Thomas began serving as Pastor here in January 1995. He grew up in Edison, New Jersey, received a Bachelor of Science in math at the University of Michigan, and his Master of Divinity at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. In 1999, he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Divinity degree by the International Seminary in Plymouth, Florida. Rev. Thomas has served as an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church since 1982. In 2004, Ray served as Moderator of the Presbytery de Cristo.

Elizabeth Smith
Parish Associate

Rev. Elizabeth Smith began serving as Holy Way’s Parish Associate in October 2015. She works closely with the Mission Committee to broaden and deepen our relationships with local mission partners. She also teaches Adult Education classes throughout the year on a wide variety of topics and keeps us current on social media!

Elizabeth grew up in Kansas and received her seminary degree from Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, GA. Prior to enrolling in seminary, she served as a Young Adult Volunteer along the US/Mexican border in Nogales, where she lived for two years. She and her husband, the Rev. Bart Smith, moved from Roanoke, VA (where she served on the pastoral staff of Second Presbyterian Church) in March 2015 when he began serving as the Pastor of St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church here in Tucson. Elizabeth and Bart love living in the desert and being the proud parents of a hound mix puppy named Gumby. 

Rev. Ed Parsil
Parish Visitor

Rev. Ed Parsil has been our Parish Visitor since 1996. He grew up in Highland Park, New Jersey, received a BA Degree from Central College in Iowa, and Master of Divinity at New Brunswick Theological Seminary in NJ. He served as a Missionary in East Harlem Protestant Parish in New York City, and Pastored Churches in Hoboken, NJ, North Brunswick, NJ, and Tucson before retiring in 1995.

Ryan Phillips
Director of Music

At the age of 8, Ryan began his musical journey with the Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus. While taking every opportunity to sing, in high school, he was a 3-year All-state musician, guiding him to make the decision to continue his music education. In 2013, he graduated from the University of Arizona with a bachelor’s degree in music education, choral emphasis.  Currently, Ryan is in his third year as music director at the Academy of Tucson High School where he leads two guitar ensembles, a mixed choir, and the Advanced Women’s choir, where two years in a row has received a Superior rating at NAU’s Jazz/Madrigal festival.  He has also held the assistant director position with various community ensembles, notably the Tucson Masterworks Chorale and The Helios Ensemble.

It was during college when Ryan found his passion for church singing. He has held two staff singer positions as bass section leader and is currently in his second year as Director of Music at The Holy Way Presbyterian Church. He is continuously overwhelmed with the love and support that he receives on a weekly basis and could not ask for a more wonderful group of musicians and friends!

Astrid Chan

Astrid Chan received her doctorate and masters degrees in Piano Performance from the University of Arizona.  Ms. Chan has been teaching private and group piano lessons for all levels for over twelve years, and is currently the piano teacher at the Arizona State School for the Deaf and the Blind.  Ms. Chan also serves on the committee for the Tucson Music Teachers Association Ensemble concert and is the secretary for the Arizona State Music Teachers Association.