DEACON HAROLD BURKE-SIVERS
Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers - known around the world as the “Dynamic Deacon” - is one of the most sought-after speakers in the Church today. He is a powerful and passionate evangelist and preacher whose no-nonsense approach to living and proclaiming the Catholic faith is sure to challenge and inspire.
Deacon Harold travels across the United States and around the world speaking at conferences, workshops, parish missions, retreats, high schools and young adult events - in short, to people of all ages and from all walks of life who desire to know Jesus intimately and enjoy a deeper personal relationship with Him.
His areas of expertise include marriage and family life, discerning the will of God, the sacraments, the Church’s vocational choices and how they are lived out, male spirituality, pro-life issues, evangelization, prayer, and many others.
Deacon Harold holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics and Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame, and a Master of Theological Studies from the University of Dallas.
His work has appeared in Envoy Magazine, The Catholic World Report and The National Catholic Register. He hosts his own weekly broadcast, “From the Rooftops,” every Wednesday on Radio Maria, and has appeared as a guest on numerous other national and international radio programs, including “Catholic Answers Live,” “Catholic Connection,” “Kresta in the Afternoon” and “Vocation Boom Radio.” In addition, he is the host or co-host of several popular series on EWTN television, including “Behold the Man: Spirituality for Men,” Made in His Image: Family Life Today,” “Christ the Servant: The Vocation of Deacons,” “Authentically Free at Last” and “Priests and Deacons: Ministers of Mercy.”
Deacon Harold is featured on The Greatest Commandments: A 40-Week Spiritual Journey for Married Couples,a vibrant marriage-enrichment program rooted in biblical values and designed to help husbands and wives know God better, trust Him fully and love Him completely throughout the course of their married lives.
Retaining a deep love of Benedictine spirituality which he gained during his time discerning a call to that religious community, Deacon Harold is a Benedictine Oblate of Mt. Angel Abbey. He is also an associate member of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars, a member of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy and a consultation team member for the National Conference of Catholic Bishops’ National Directory for Catechesis.
As the president and CEO of Servant Enterprises, Deacon Harold oversees that nonprofit organization’s endeavors, which include hosting an international institute for Catholic male spirituality, coordinating dynamic speaking tours and life-changing retreats, and developing products and services that support family life.
Most importantly, Deacon Harold is married to his lovely wife, Colleen, and they have four beautiful children. They live in Portland, Oregon, where Deacon Harold is assigned to Immaculate Heart Catholic Church.
For more information on Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers please visit his website:
Deacon Tom and Mary Jane Fox
Deacon Tom and Mary Jane Fox married in 1978. They had a re-awakening of their Catholic faith in the 1980s. While on a trip through the Holy Land, they were directed by a local priest to take a silent walk along the Sea of Galilee. There, Jesus unmistakably spoke to them each.
In September 1986, Deacon Tom and Mary Jane Fox left their respective careers in hotel management and the travel industry to work full-time for St. Matthew Catholic Church. For the first seven years, their main ministry was door-to-door home visitation; in the first few years, they visited over 10,000 families. They also helped establish other outreach ministries at St. Matthew.
Founders of an Evangelization Apostolate
The Pilgrim Center of Hope was founded in June of 1993 as a response to John Paul II's call for a "new evangelization" to encourage Catholics to live and share their faith. The ministry has received the blessing of Archbishop Emeritus Patrick Flores, former Archbishop Jose Gomez, and Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller, M.Sp.S.
Tom and Mary Jane’s evangelization mission has included travel to parishes in California, Kansas, Louisiana, Mexico, and within Texas to give presentations on their ministry experiences, Parish Missions and on Door-to-Door Home Visitation Outreach. In June 1989 and June 1990, they assisted the pastor of St. Ignatius Parish in Belize City, Belize, in a parish-wide evangelization effort.
Their Ministry of Pilgrimages has led them to Israel, Palestine, Jordan, Egypt, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Greece and Turkey. Their specialty (and dearest to their hearts) is the Holy Land, having traveled there 47 times since 1984.
Their ministry work has been featured in five nation-wide Catholic periodicals and on the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) show Living His Life Abundantly in 1995 and on the video I Am the Bread of Life, produced by Stepstone Productions, Inc. In February 2008, they received the Catholic Television of San Antonio (CTSA) Leadership Award. In March 2011, they received Guadalupe Radio Network's 'Pescadores de Hombres' (Fishers of Men) Award. They were invested into the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem in October of 2011. In October 2012, they received the Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation's "Living Stones Award" on behalf of The Pilgrim Center of Hope.
Christopher J. Stravitsch
Christopher J. Stravitsch, DMin(Cand), LPC, LMFT is the Founding Vice President of the St. John Paul II Foundation. He has a passion for creating new ministries that meet today's most pressing needs, especially the pastoral needs of couples and families.
Mr. Stravitsch regularly publishes articles that reverence the dignity of the person and foster the good of marriage and family life. His articles have been published in Homiletic and Pastoral Review, the USCCB’s marriage apostolate website ForYourMarriage.org, Fellowship of Catholic Scholars Quarterly, New Oxford Review, The Cord: A Franciscan Spiritual Review, Lay Witness, Life Site News, Life News, Truth and Charity Forum, Saint Austin Review, diocesan newspapers, and more.
Prior to co-founding the John Paul II Foundation, Mr. Stravitsch served eight years on the Formation Faculty of Assumption Seminary as Director of Collegians in San Antonio. There he worked with the faculty to develop the college formation program since its inception in 2006, in accord with the Program of Priestly Formation and John Paul II’s apostolic exhortation Pastores Dabo Vobis. Mr. Stravitsch still serves as an adjunct faculty member of the Institute for Priestly Formation in Omaha, Nebraska, where he teaches in the Spiritual Formation for Diocesan Seminarians summer program. He has a mandatum conferred by Most Reverend José H. Gomez, S.T.D.
Aside from his work with the St. John Paul II Foundation, Mr. Stravitsch is the Founding Executive Director of Rejoice Counseling Apostolate, an apostolate which now serves Catholic parishes throughout Houston and San Antonio by providing onsite Catholic counseling services for individuals, couples and families. Mr. Stravitsch is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, actively engaged in counseling in the greater Houston area. He earned a dual degree in Pastoral Counseling from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas, which consisted of a M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy (2006) and a M.A. in Pastoral Ministry (2007). He earned a B.A. in Psychology (2003) from Texas A&M University. Mr. Stravitsch is currently a Doctor of Ministry Candidate at The Catholic University of America in Washington D.C., where his research focuses on the spiritual formation of couples and families.
Mr. Stravitsch and his wife, Sarah, reside in Katy, Texas with their four children.
Richard and Julie Reyna
Richard and Julie Reyna grew up in Edinburg, Texas, where they got married 20 years ago after a whirlwind romance that began in the first grade! They are longtime parishioners of Our Lady of Grace.
Richard is General Manager of five Catholic radio stations for the Guadalupe Radio Network. Julie is a Catholic speaker and homeschools their four awesome kids. She and Richard emcee the Catholic Women’s and Men’s Conferences here in San Antonio.
Awakened to their Catholic Faith as a young married couple, the Reyna’s have made it their mission, as the Head and Heart of their family, to grow in knowledge and love of Jesus as they work to get each other and their children to heaven.