AUTHOR, HOLY LAND GUIDE AND ITFF FAVORITE
Proclaiming the Gospel: Back Then & All Over Again
ABSTRACT: In the first centuries after Christ, pagans worshipped many Gods and permitted the worship of Jesus as an equal to their gods and even Caesar. Christians however said, “No, we will only worship the one, true God.” Their principals made them persecuted outcasts. Sound familiar? Today, pluralism is the new paganism as comfort, affluence and self indulgence become the new gods and we face a deadly choice between remaining faithful and losing our souls.
Stephen K. Ray was born in 1954 to parents who had just become Christians through a Billy Graham Crusade. He was raised in a Fundamentalist Baptist family and was dedicated to Jesus in the local Baptist Church. At four years old he “asked Jesus into his heart” and was “born again” according to Baptist tradition. In 1976 Stephen married Janet who came from a long line of Protestants. Her ancestry was traced to pilgrims who came from England on the Mayflower & Hussite Protestants from Moravia who joined the Protestant Reformation in the 1600s.
EXPLORING THEIR PROTESTANT ROOTS
With two small children in tow, Steve & Janet moved to Europe for one year where they traveled extensively researching their reformation roots in Switzerland, Germany and England. They studied for six months at L’Abri in Switzerland with the noted Evangelical theologian Francis Schaeffer. On subsequent trips to Europe, Steve & Janet visited communist countries and even smuggled Bibles and medicine to Christians behind the Iron Curtain.
In 1975 Stephen started his own business with a $5 investment and homemade business cards. His building services company, Distinctive Maintenance grew to over 600 employees at its height.
Prior to 1994 neither Steve or Janet had ever set foot in a Catholic Church. After studying many books to convince their best friend and recent convert, Al Kresta, that the early church was evangelical, Steve and Janet backed their way right into the Catholic Church. On Pentecost Sunday, 1994 they entered the church at Christ the King Parish in Ann Arbor Michigan. Steve began writing a letter to his father explaining why they became Catholic…this letter soon became the book Crossing the Tiber: Evangelical Protestants Discover the Historic Church, published by Ignatius Press.
Since then Steve’s passion for the depth of truth found within the Catholic tradition has led him to walk away from his business and pursue what he really loves–writing, speaking, producing Catholic films and leading pilgrimages to Biblical Lands. Steve and Janet have been to the Holy Land over 100 times exploring, filming, and leading thousands of pilgrims. Steve is a regular guest on Catholic radio & TV including Catholic Answers, Ave Maria Radio, Relevant Radio & EWTN. He writes Bible Studies for Catholic Scripture Study International.
A full list of Steve’s affiliations can be found on Wikipedia at bit.ly/steveray