Father Ken Deasy is a dynamic and personable native Californian Catholic priest known throughout the Los Angeles area as an open, energetic, humorous, compassionate, athletic, all-inclusive guy. At the same time, Father Ken loves to serve and he brings the experience of joy to the inner city of Los Angeles. He connects people of different faiths, lifestyles, cultures and ages using light-hearted banter with his message of compassion and God’s love for all.
Father Ken seeks out the “lepers in our midst” and his joy and talent are in connecting with the many people he has met on his journey: imprisoned youth, gang members who want “out of the life” including tattoo removal, community organizers, children of all abilities, those teaching and receiving religious instruction, and those seeking dignity for the human experience. TV and media attention over the years has focused on Father Ken and his 25+ years as a priest, especially when he served as pastor for 10 years at St. Agatha Parish in southwest Los Angeles.
St. Agatha’s became a place where “all felt welcome” and where the parishioners were “empowered to find a joyous expression of their faith”… regardless of religious affiliation. As Father Ken says, “Do we know the joy of experiencing the love of God? Religion oftentimes brings us to where God was, rather than where God is. I encourage people to find God in the present rather than the past.”
Father Ken brings new hope to those who feel exhausted by the struggles of life, whether the poverty and crime-ridden neighborhood, depressed or mentally ill self or loved ones, loss of faith, or unemployment. He is sensitive to “those who don’t believe they are able to have a better life because of circumstances of location, culture and expectations.”
After St. Agatha’s, Father Ken served as the Coordinator of the Holy Childhood Association, an office of the Vatican’s Office for the Propagation of the Faith. Speaking to the young Catholic church, he supported “kids helping kids.” The goal was to encourage local children to be aware of children in over 91 countries who live with scarcity, hunger and death on a daily basis. Father Ken was able to bring this teaching into sharp focus after the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti. He spearheaded a campaign among parochial school children in Los Angeles County to raise money to help the children in Haiti, specifically those from Montfort Institute whose school was destroyed, along with the convent of the Daughters of Wisdom, the teaching order of nuns at the Institute. The Montfort Institute teaches over 200 school age children who are deaf and mute, and who were not supported in their disabilities in the Haitian culture. Father Ken has returned to Haiti 12 times and delivered a total of $400,000 in cash and as many duffels as he can carry on board a plane in hats, school supplies, holiday goodies, sports equipment, hair ornaments and fun activities. Construction on all the major buildings has been completed. There remains work to do outfitting the dormitories and classrooms with additional furniture and equipment.
Hollywood has also sought out Father Ken. He was a story adviser for the movie Bruce Almighty as well as serving as mentor/adviser and “point of focus” for ABC’s Nothing Sacred. He has been a resource for Los Angeles radio/television news-programming. In addition, he has worked with programming on the E Channel, Food Network, the History Channel and more. He has co-hosted with Rabbi Jerry Cutler a radio movie-review program “Review from the Pew” on KTIE, AM590. TV appearances include Jay Leno’s Tonight Show, Tyra Banks and Steve Harvey!. Father Ken self-published his book: Get off the Cross–Someone Else needs the Wood: The Experiences of a Roamin’ Catholic Priest. (Available on Amazon.com). The journey continues with Father Ken’s Vineyard.