Today (December 11) is a special day, it’s Campus Minister Deacon Randy Smith’s birthday! In honor of his birthday, we wanted to recognize him for all he’s done for our faith community and share some of his thoughts with the Crusader family.
Deacon Randy accepted the role as the Central Catholic Director of Campus Ministry in February 2022. He graduated from St. Mary Catholic School in Massillon and is a 1983 Central Catholic graduate. In 2013, he was ordained to the Diaconate for the Diocese of Youngstown. He has served in youth ministry for more than 30 years. Deacon Smith has held several positions in the diocese. He is, perhaps, best known for his service as the director of religious education at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Massillon and as one of the leaders of youth ministry in the Massillon/Canton area. For nearly five years, he was called to serve as the associate vocation director for the Diocese of Youngstown. In addition to serving as the campus minister for Central Catholic, he is the parish leader and director of religious education at St. Mary/St. Benedict Parish in Canton.
Given his dedication to serving others and his ability to celebrate each person’s unique God-given identity, it is no surprise that in 2021, Deacon Randy was named by the Knights of Columbus as the state of Ohio’s Clergy of the Year!
Deacon Randy has become an important part of the Central Catholic family. He can be found playing kickball with students, attending athletic events, playing board games, sitting in the audience in our theatre, cheering with our Crusader Cheerleaders, visiting our partner schools to share lessons with them and encouraging them to extend their faith development at Central Catholic. Students especially appreciate him as he supplies them with snacks and treats. He prays with staff, students, and their families alike. Deacon Randy is always ready to answer questions and have faith discussions. He has certainly added to the feeling of family found at Central Catholic.
Deacon Randy and his wife Lee Ann have been married for 33 years and currently live in the rectory located on Central Catholic’s campus. Mrs. Smith was selected this school year to serve as secretary for St. Paul Catholic School in North Canton. Our community is blessed to have the Smiths as part of our family.
Earlier this year, as he started what will be his first full school year as campus minister, he answered some questions about returning to Central Catholic. We wanted to share his insight with you.