Dr. Timothy J. Keller was born in the year 1950 and grew up in Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania where he attended Bucknell University, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and the Westminster Theological Seminary. During his seminary training, he met and married the former Kathy Louise Kristy of Pittsburgh, Pa. They have three sons: David, Michael, and Jonathan.
Dr. Keller was converted during his college years through the ministry of Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship. The writings of C.S. Lewis were, says Dr. Keller, the foundational work of God in his life. His ministry experience began with three years as an associate on staff with Inter-Varsity Fellowship in Boston, Massachusetts. He was ordained by the Presbyterian Church in America in Boston and relocated to Virginia where he served as a pastor for nine years. During that time, Dr. Keller also served as director of church planting for his denomination in the Middle Atlantic region, supervising the development of two dozen new congregations.
During the mid 1980’s the Keller family moved to Philadelphia, where Tim served on the faculty of Westminster Seminary, teaching communication and leadership. While in Philadelphia, Tim and Kathy became involved in Urban Ministry. During this time, while serving as Director of Mercy Ministries for his denomination, Tim authored two books: Resources for Deacons (for the PCA, 1986) and Ministries of Mercy: The Call of the Jericho Road(Zondervan, 1989). Both volumes provide theory and practice for ministry to persons with material, physical, emotional, and economical difficulties. In Philadelphia, while actively involved in an evangelistic outreach to Muslims, he also chaired an evangelical organization reaching out to the homosexual population. While acting as chairman, Dr. Keller helped organize and set up a much needed ministry to people with AIDS. In addition, he served as consultant to a local Christian service organization that provided literary education, job training and job placement to unemployed and underemployed people in the city.
Between the years of 1987 and 1988, the Presbyterian Church in America began to form plans for planting a church in New York City. Tim was approached and asked to do the field research and lay the foundation for this new project. It was through this assignment that Tim and Kathy found their hearts being captured by the great need and opportunity for ministry in New York City.
In June of 1989 the Kellers moved to the city to begin planting what is nowRedeemer Presbyterian Church, which with God’s help has prospered beyond all of their early projections and expectations. As a result, Redeemer Presbyterian Church has become especially effective in reaching Manhattan professionals from many diverse occupations and cultural backgrounds.
Tim and Kathy Keller are committed to promoting, nurturing, and supporting the growth of new churches in America and around the world. It is their desire to minister in New York City for the remainder of their lives. Their prayer is to plan and help incite the movement of holistic ministries to meet the needs of both the body and soul. This plan encompasses a church planting movement that will spawn dozens of new congregations throughout the urban area and the world and will continue for decades to come.
Now with a staff of more than 90 employees and a church attendance of over 5,000 members and regular attendees, Redeemer has begun sponsoring the planting of other professional and multiethnic churches throughout the metropolitan area and the world.
The Kellers live on Roosevelt Island in New York City.