Welcome to RUF Memphis, RUF has been serving all types of students on the campus of Memphis for the past twenty years. We like to say we are a ministry for the masses. Our aim in RUF is to create a safe place for all students to explore Christianity and grow in their understanding of who Jesus is and what it means to follow Him in community with others at the UoM. We are here for the “convinced” and the “unconvinced,” the lost, the found, the burned, bored, cynical and spiritual. We invite you, no matter where you are in the process, to RUF at the University of Memphis.
John was born and raised in what he firmly believes as God’s country, Columbia, South Carolina. He graduated from Bryan College, in Dayton Tennessee, in 1996. The year prior to that he spent a summer in Macon, Mississippi at Lake Forest Ranch where he was a camp counselor and got to hang out with students by day and write sappy love notes to the Girl Counselor in Cabin 5 by night. In August of 1997, John convinced Girl Counselor in Cabin 5 to marry him, and Trina, a die hard football fan, who graduated from the University of Alabama that same year, became his bride. John later earned a Masters of Divinity from Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, Mississippi, and he was ordained at Independent Presbyterian Church in Memphis in 2008, where he served for 7 years. He then served at Lexington Presbyterian Church in Lexington, South Carolina for almost 4 years, and he has currently been serving as Student Pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Rome, Georgia. In the spring of 2016, John was called as the RUF Campus Minister to the University of Memphis. John is humbled that after so many years in ministry, he has been given the opportunity to continue living out his dream and passion of hanging out and loving students and teaching them about the crazy, radical, free and unmerited love of Jesus. John and Trina are the exhausted parents of three loud, dirty, silly, amazing boys. They sometimes answer to the names of Charlie (13), Henry (10) and Max (7).
Katie Allen is a lake kid, born and raised in Grove, Oklahoma. She graduated with her Associates from Northeastern Oklahoma A&M in 2015 before transferring to Oklahoma State University (go pokes) where she earned her Bachelors in Strategic Communications in 2017. Katie hopes to one day work as a journalist or public relations consultant in the music industry or get paid to follow Colony House around.
Katie is an avid concert goer, chicken nugget fanatic, and thrift shop enthusiast.
CJ grew up right outside the city of Philadelphia, PA. He attended Penn State as an animal science major, but halfway through his second year felt a call to vocational ministry and changed majors to sociology. God was working in his life through RUF, molding him in light of the gospel and leading him to love and rely on Christ more.
He is excited for the honor to intern at the University of Memphis for the next two years through RUF. With a wide range of interests, from reading and writing, to ultimate and baseball, and even board games and video games, CJ is always willing to try new activities with his friends.