Immersed in Christ and Father David M. Knight
About Immersed in Christ, the Non-Profit Organization
Immersed in Christ is the non-profit organization founded by Father David M. Knight, an American Priest for more than 59 years, who passed away on March 21, 2021 in Huehuetenango, Guatemala just a few days after he turned 90. Immersed in Christ began with Fr. Knight’s 1977 book His Way, on the spirituality of the laity. It initially sold over 140,000 copies and was used in renewal programs in dioceses throughout the country. His Way has also been used as a follow-up by the Cursillo Movement, and as a religion textbook. Fr. Knight has developed the five themes of His Way in numerous subsequent books: on Scripture (a six-book series on Matthew’s Gospel), the Sacraments, the Mass, Marian devotion, and daily spirituality. The sequel, Reaching Jesus — Five Steps to a Fuller Life, has been translated into Spanish, Polish, Korean, and Indonesian, and republished in Peru, Poland, India and Indonesia).
The Immersed in Christ plan includes enough programs to engage a parish or group for six weeks or up to six years and more.
About Father David M. Knight
David Knight was born in Dallas, Texas, ordained a Jesuit priest in Lyon, France, and spent three years as a bush pastor in Chad (Africa). He then earned his doctorate in theology at Catholic University, Washington, D.C., and after serving as acting rector of the Jesuit novitiate in Grand Coteau, Louisiana, was made pastor of two parishes there — one black, one white — with the mission of integrating them. (This story is written up in Tanner Colby’s book Some of My Best Friends Are Black, Viking/Penguin, 2012). He then served as the spiritual director for the Jesuit community of Loyola University in New Orleans. In 1973, he went to Memphis Tennessee to help found a religious order of nuns, which did not succeed. But while he was engaged in this, a new provincial suggested he join the diocese of Memphis, into which he was incardinated in 1980.
Fr. Knight has taught spirituality at Catholic University (Washington, D.C.), Loyola University in New Orleans, Christian Brothers University in Memphis, and to ministers and seminarians of several denominations at Memphis Theological Seminary (Presbyterian).
He has been a pastor three times, has taught in both boys' and girls' high schools, including a rural black high school and a school for troubled girls under the care of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd. He spent four years as a college campus minister at Christian Brothers University in Memphis, served as Diocesan Spiritual Director of Cursillos, Diocesan Spiritual Director of the Hispanic Catholic Community of Memphis, and has been chaplain to five different communities of women religious, both active and contemplative. For several years he was a regular columnist for the Marian Helpers Bulletin. For two years he taught and discussed his books on Matthew's Gospel on the radio for an hour every Saturday morning in Spanish. During his lifetime, he gave more than five hundred workshops, missions and retreats on the religious vows and lay spirituality, and performed ministries throughout the mainland United States, Hawaii and Alaska; and in Australia, Canada, Chad, England, Ecuador, France, Germany, Guam, Guatemala, Haiti, Ireland, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Saipan, Sierra Leone, Sweden and Spain. He has given priests' and deacons' retreats or performed other ministry in most of the United States. He spoke English, French, Spanish and German.
Even after he officially retired from diocesan work, he continued to teach graduate courses in theology at Christian Brothers University; teach in the diocesan Institute for Liturgy and Spirituality; give numerous missions and retreats in the Unites States and other countries; preside at Mass daily at the Monastery of St. Clare when not out of town; suppliy ministry in other parishes on demand; host retreats at His Way House in Memphis (especially the lay-led Retiros de Evangelización and retreats for the Spanish Cursillo) ; give talks to various groups, including Jews, Catholics and Protestants, on spirituality and theology; engage in ecumenical outreach with ministers involved in spiritual formation; make available online daily lectionary reflections for years A, B, and C of the liturgical cycle; and devote four to six hours a day to writing.
As of 2021, he had published more than 40 books, plus numerous booklets and manuals, and over fifty articles in thirty different periodicals. Some of his later books include those published by Twenty-third Publications: The Way of the Spirit: Using the Gifts, Showing the Fruits (2021); A Fresh Look at Confession, Nuts and Bolts of Daily Spirituality, and A Fresh Look at the Mass. After his death, Immersed in Christ published Alcanzando a Jesus (Spanish translation of Reaching Jesus: Five Steps to A Fuller Life).
Father David's ministry continues through the work of his nonprofit organization, Immersed in Christ! With your support, we continue to make Father's past publications available and to publish many previously unpublished works in the future.
Karen Pulmer Focht (c) 2018