Youth ministry in the Diocese of Tyler will have a new focus and energy with the addition of Mark Knox as the diocese’s full-time Director of Youth Ministry, Bishop Joseph E. Strickland has announced.
Knox, who will begin his duties in Tyler in January, comes to the diocese with almost ten years of experience in youth ministry. Most recently, he managed the youth and young adult programs for Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Colleyville, Texas.
“I’m grateful and thrilled to have been invited to participate in ministry within the Diocese of Tyler by Bishop Strickland. There is nothing more powerful and encouraging than a teenager with a love and zeal for Jesus Christ and His church,” said Knox. “I’m excited to partner with the many parents, students and youth ministers throughout every parish in the diocese.”
Having a full-time minister to implement the Bishop’s pastoral vision for youth and to create awareness and programming that will aid in making disciples of young people will be the main focus of the position according to Fr. Justin Braun, chaplain to the diocesan youth ministry programs.
“This is very exciting for all of us in the diocese – clergy and laity,” said Braun. “Mark will work to form good relationships with priests and parishes to fully engage our youth in the life of the Church.”
Knox echoed this, “I have great hopes for new retreats, programs and events that will allow students to encounter Christ in powerful ways and connect them to the larger mission of the Catholic Church to go and make disciples.”
Knox is familiar with the Diocese of Tyler, having spent two summers in college working for diocesan chancellor Fr. Hank Lanik at The Pines Catholic Camp.
“Out of college, I worked as a wildlife biologist on a large game ranch in south Texas, but then I came back to The Pines to work under Fr. Hank Lanik on the ministry staff and that’s when I discovered my calling for youth ministry and took my first parish job at St. Paul’s in Richardson, ” said Knox.
Knox is a graduate of Texas A&M University and is pursuing a Master’s degree in theological studies from the University of Dallas. He and his wife, Greer, have two young sons.
“I’m grateful and humbled by this opportunity from Bishop Strickland and I look forward to the great work we will do together to build up the kingdom for His glory!” concluded Knox.