Rev. Keith Johnson
1961 to February 24, 2015
Reverend Keith Johnson, 53, former rector at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Ben Lomond, passed away on Feb. 24, 2015 due to complications from cancer.
Born in New Orleans in 1961, Keith grew up schooled in the particular values of his parents, Minnie and Robert Johnson. These virtues — including Southern warmth, kindheartedness, and a gracious respect of others — would shine in his ministry as a priest.
Keith attended the University of Illinois, Champaign Urbana. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in political science.
In 1998, Keith married Ginny O'Hare, and took on an instant family which included Ginny's two children, Edward and Sarah. The family moved to Alexandria, Va., where Keith studied at Virginia Theological Seminary.
In 2001, he was ordained a Deacon in the Episcopal Church by Bishop Leopold Frade. Later that year, he accepted a priesthood in the Diocese of Southeast Florida. Keith simultaneously served the church as Rector of St. Matthew's and Assistant at St Paul’s in Delray Beach. Keith’s personal mission was to bridge the racial gap between these two diverse parishes.
One of Keith’s joys was coaching Edward and his various teams in football. He coached Pop Warner football during his time in seminary, and continued coaching freshman and junior varsity ball at San Lorenzo Valley High School.
From 2003 to 2008, Keith served as Rector of St. Andrew's in Ben Lomond. While there, Keith served on the board of Valley Churches United Missions.
Keith next went on to minister as an Assistant Priest at Holy Trinity in Clearwater, Fla., for a few years. He then spent 18 months at St. Luke's in New Orleans before being called to Harlem’s historic St. Philip's Church in 2012.
He is survived by his wife, Ginny; his step-children, Edward and Sarah; his parents, Robert and Minnie Johnson who reside in Rantoul, Ill.; and his sister Eliska and her husband, Marco Paratore, who reside in Dallas, Tex.
St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church will dedicate the 10 a.m. Eucharist on Sunday, March 8 to Fr. Keith Johnson. This dedicated Eucharist will include some of the music he introduced at the church, and a time for parishioners and friends to share memories.