Fr. Joseph Reed
FR. JOSEPH REED was born and raised in Knoxville. He attended Sacred Heart School, then Farragut Middle and High Schools. He was a seminarian for the Diocese before joining Conception Abbey as a monk for almost twenty years. Fr. Joe earned additional degrees in theology from St. John’s Seminary [Minnesota] and St. Vincent Seminary [Pennsylvania]. Over the years, Fr. Joe has taught and served as an academic advisor, spiritual director and director of liturgy at Conception Seminary College, worked in the business and vocations offices at Conception Abbey, and as a master of ceremonies while living and studying in Rome. Since his return to Knoxville, Fr. Joe has served as parochial vicar and school chaplain at Sacred Heart Cathedral . In addition to being the pastor of St. John Neumann Catholic Church and School, he continues to serve as the Diocesan Vocation Director, Co-Director of the Office of Worship and Liturgy, and Master of Ceremonies. Fr. Joe has a strong passion for Catholic education and for the Church’s evangelizing mission. He also serves as a Missionary of Mercy.
Fr. Michael Maples
FR. MICHAEL MAPLES serves as a part-time parochial vicar at St. John Neumann Parish. He is a licensed psychologist who provides counseling to adult individuals and couples at Catholic Charities of East Tennessee. Fr. Maples was raised in Maryville. He completed undergraduate degrees in Psychology and English Literature at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and earned a PhD in Counseling Psychology from the University of Iowa. He attended seminary at Saint Meinrad School of Theology [Indiana]. Prior to his assignment at St. John Neumann, Fr. Maples served at Sacred Heart Cathedral, St. Therese of Lisieux Church in Cleveland, and Holy Resurrection Byzantine Catholic Church in Seymour. He is an active member of local and national psychological associations. He has special interest in the interactions of religious faith with mental health and with literature, film, and art.
Sr. Restituta Nyinoweitu, ESM
SISTER RESTITUTA NYINOWEITU (Sr. Resty) is a member of the Evangelizing Sisters of Mary Community and has a BA in Missionary Catechesis from Urbanian University in Rome, a BA in Psychology from Alvernia University in Pennsylvania, and a Master’s degree in Pastoral Counseling from Neumann University, also in Pennsylvania. She completed a Residence program in CPE (Clinical Pastoral Education) in Akron, Ohio. Sr. Resty serves as our Pastoral Associate; doing individual and family counseling, working with engaged couples for marriage preparation, and facilitating seminars for marriage enrichment for the various groups. She also assists with the marriage annulment process. She facilitates groups on a variety of topics regarding spiritual and emotional development and healing which profoundly touch the lives of each one of us.
Deacon Don Amelse
DEACON DON AMELSE was ordained in 1985 and assigned to St, John Neumann in 1987. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Loyola University Chicago and a Masters in Pastoral Studies with a concentration in Spirituality from Loyola University New Orleans. He worked as parish bookkeeper from 1988 – 2010 and was involved in Confirmation Preparation from 1988 to 2008. He took a sabbatical from ministry in 2010 to care for his wife Rickie who had ovarian cancer. Shortly after her passing in June 2013, he joined the RCIA team with Sr. Elizabeth and now heads the Confirmation Preparation process. Deacon Don also founded SJN’s Claver Ministries to provide emotional support for caregivers.
Deacon Al Forsythe
DEACON AL FORSYTHE was ordained in June 2016. He received a degree in Urban and Outdoor Recreation and has many years of experience in Youth Ministry as the Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry in the Archdiocese of Newark, New Jersey, prior to coming to East Tennessee. Deacon Al currently serves as the Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry for the Diocese of Knoxville, as well as the Coordinator of our Parish Youth Ministry.
Deacon Mike Gouge
Deacon Mike Humphreys
DEACON MIKE HUMPHREYS was ordained in June 2016. He attended Minot State University in Minot, North Dakota. He majored in business mid management and recently attended Roane State Community College to enhance his writing and computer skills. He retired from Boeing Aerospace and now enjoys his life’s hobby—piano technician. He is a catechist for Confirmation and is involved in the music ministry and visitation to the sick and aging. As a deacon, he hopes to continue his service to God, his physical family, his spiritual family at SJN, and to the people of the Diocese of Knoxville.
Deacon Marquis Syler
DEACON MARK SYLER was ordained in November 1985. He graduated from Wright State University in 1979 with a BA in Urban Studies and a core curriculum in Public Administration. Upon his ordination, he was signed to St. Thomas Parish in Lenoir City, where he served as DRE and religious education teacher, as well as in several ministries, including prison ministry, and on the board of the Lenoir City Crisis Pregnancy Center. He was assigned to SJN in 1988 and since then, has taught religious education, was assistant DRE, made communion visits to the hospital, nursing homes, and private homes, and has given spiritual guide talks on the Sacraments at Cursillo weekends and on the Lord’s Prayer at an RE day retreat. He has presided over enthronements of The Scared Heart of Jesus and is a spiritual director and a mentor to deacon candidates.