We are called to serve not to be served
Deacon Tom Kretzmer
I was born in Teaneck NJ, the second son and third child born in a family of seven children. We were raised in the Catholic faith and attended parochial school in New Jersey and in Wisconsin.
After elementary school I explored a religious vocation at St. Lawrence Minor Seminary. At the advice of my spiritual director a vocation was not in my immediate future.
I graduated from the seminary and enlisted in the United States Navy in 1976. While in the service I became an Aviation Medical Technician, stationed on the USS Saratoga CV60; which inspired me to pursue a career in Optometry.
After my enlistment was completed I attended Kennesaw College in 1981, while working at Kennestone Hospital. In 1986 I was accepted at Southern College of Optometry in Memphis Tennessee. I graduated in 1990 with a Doctor of Optometry.
In 1991 I moved to Thomaston Georgia to purchase an existing Optometric Practice. I started to attend St. John the Baptist Mission run by the Redemptorists out of Griffin Georgia.
In 1992 I was elected Vice -President of the Parish Council and in the following year was Parish Council President a position I held until we broke ground for our new parish church in 2005. I was on the committee to over-see the combination of two missions into a parish, was on the capitol campaign to raise funds to start the new parish. I am the charter financial secretary for our Knights of Columbus council.
I have been at various times stewardship committee, finance committee, and building committee person. I have been a teacher of RCIA, confirmation class teacher, Adult education teacher, CCD teacher. I served for four years as a sacristan. Over the period of last 24 years served as a lector, Eucharistic minister, and Usher. I have been a trainer for the ministries mentioned above, as well a alter server trainer.
In 2009 I applied to enter the permanent deaconate and completed the formation process in December of 2015.
My Ordination of Diaconate is on Feb 6, 2016 by the Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory.