Southwestern Pennsylvania is Tom’s birthplace. Tom was raised by parents who knew and loved the Lord Jesus Christ. Tom placed his faith in Jesus at about the age of 12 and continued in the church. Tom felt the called to ministry and completed his bachelor’s degree at Philadelphia College of Bible (now Cairn University) and his Master of Theology Degree at Dallas Theological Seminary. Tom pastored an Evangelical Free Church for nine years and then worked for the State of Florida for eleven years prior to serving as chaplain at Munroe Regional Medical Center for 16 years. Tom was ordained a deacon in the Anglican Church by the Diocese of Biharamulo in May 2019 and as a priest in October 2019. Tom and Pamela Backstrom married in 1971. God has blessed them with two children and five grandchildren. It is now Tom’s privilege to minister as an assisting priest at Christ the King Anglican Church.
Karen Murphy was ordained a vocational deacon by the Right Reverend Bishop Chuck Murphy in 2012. Raised a devout, practicing Catholic, Karen considers herself a born-again, spirit-filled, Anglo-Catholic. She has been a faithful member of Christ the King Anglican Church since 2007. She has three loving, adult sons, Peter, Patrick, and Philip Murphy. In February of 1985, she dedicated her life to living, loving and serving her Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ. She believes in the Gospel mandate to live out the “Great Commission.” Before coming on board, Karen served in both public and private education for the past 34 years. She was a teacher for 17 years in Catholic, private and public schools. She was an elementary and middle school principal for 17 years in service to both the Catholic and Jewish communities. One of her fondest memories was serving alongside a Rabbi as a General Studies principal for the Hillel Day School of Boca Raton, “A Gentile honored to be among God’s chosen Jewish people!” She holds a bachelor’s degree from Monmouth University, a master’s degree from Oral Robert’s University and certification from the Anglican School of Ministry for ordained ministry to the Deaconate. Karen is licensed as a member of the clergy from the Anglican Providence of Tanzania through the Right Reverend Bishop Vitalis. Although she is retired from education, she will never retire from serving the Lord or His people!
Matthew MacKenzie is an Ocala native and a graduate of Grace Christian School, our primary outreach ministry. After graduating from the University of South Florida in 2010, he joined the staff at CTK. Matthew loves watching the students in the Youth Ministry come to know and love Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. He has a heart for people and loves to see the body of Christ work together in unity.
Sarah Head continues her service to the Lord as our Children’s Ministry Coordinator. Sarah grew up in the Episcopal/Anglican faith with her father serving as a Music Director and then Priest and her mother as the Christian Ed Director. Sarah graduated from Liberty University in 2015 with a degree in Elementary Education. She then served as the Youth Director at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Winter Haven for seven years. She also taught 3rd Grade for four years following her years in college. Sarah moved to Ocala in 2019 to assist her brother’s growing family. She also teaches 5th Grade at Ocala Springs Elementary School. Sarah is committed to serving the Lord and ministering to our children in BIG ways! She is overjoyed to be a part of a spirit-filled church family. Her goal is to point children towards Jesus and provide them with the knowledge and tools needed for them to begin their lifelong journey with Christ.
Bryan grew up in the Episcopal Church and gave his heart and life to Jesus in college. After spending 11+ years in youth ministry, Bryan heard a call to ordination and spent three and a half years in the Indian Ocean as a missionary and priest. Bryan now teaches middle school science at Grace Christian School and leading the praise band at the 10:15 Sunday service at CTK. Bryan is married to Shakila, they have two adorably challenging boys David and Elijah, and simply seek to do God’s will. Bryan enjoys ministering to and with people of all ages. Bryan’s favorite quotes are “we must exchange the illusion of control for the reality of influence” and “when in danger, or in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout!” Bryan is a particular fan of Romans 12 and Hebrews 12, and is quite proud of an expositional paper I wrote in seminary on the importance of Ecclesiastes – ‘meaningless, meaningless, everything is meaningless!’ (Ask him about it – the book is amazing if we better understand the word ‘meaningless’ in context.) To sum up the heart of the Church, it would be to know and be known – both by God and other people through worship, fellowship, service, evangelism, and ministry. I look forward to meeting you!
The Rev. Donald J. Curran Jr. attended the University of Wisconsin in Madison on a Navy scholarship and was commissioned an ensign in the Navy. Over the course of the next 20 years, he served in various shore billets and sea tours retiring in 1990. He attended Trinity School for Ministry in Pittsburgh, Pa. and was ordained a priest in the episcopal church in 1993. In 2008 he was the founding pastor of Christ the King Anglican Church where he continues to serve today. He is also the Canon for the Diocese of Birharomulo in Tanzania as part of the Anglican Union for the Propagation of the Gospel. He and his wife of 46 years, Cathy, have three children, Liam, Donald, and Eleanor.