Juanita Campbell Rasmus is a speaker, writer, spiritual director, and contemplative with a passion for seeing people through to their best life. She copastors the St. John’s United Methodist Church located in Downtown Houston with her husband, Rudy. Beginning with nine existing members in 1992, thousands have joined the St. John’s family making it one of the most culturally diverse congregations in the country.
Pastor Juanita is a trained spiritual director and has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Renovaré Inc. and its ministry team founded by renowned author Richard Foster. Additionally, Juanita serves on the Board of her alma mater Houston Graduate School of Theology. Juanita travels extensively speaking on spirituality and on the lessons she learned after a life-altering major depressive episode in 1999.
Juanita co-founded the Bread of Life, Inc., a not for profit corporation, with Rudy in 1992 and began serving meals to the homeless in the sanctuary at St. John’s. Years later the Bread of Life has changed the landscape of downtown Houston providing tons of fresh food, an array of services to families in peril, and transformative services for homeless individuals. Juanita most recently teamed up with Tina Knowles Lawson and Beyoncé to help forty thousand flood victims recover in the wake of Hurricane Harvey in Houston. In addition to addressing issues of health and disaster relief, Juanita launched the Temenos Community Development Corporation in 2006 and recently completed over thirty million dollars in housing development projects for the previously homeless in downtown Houston.
After recovering from kidney cancer, Juanita founded a therapeutic art program facilitating the recovery and discovery of the creative self for homeless and transitioning individuals. Her goal is to tap into the power of creativity and its ability to restore individuals to meaningful and productive lives. The Art Project-Houston takes the city’s homeless and empowers them to become hope-filled painters and artisans who craft their own livelihood and create lives filled with new possibilities.
Juanita serves on advisory boards for Rice University’s Religion and Public Life Program, and RE:Mind Houston (previously Depression and Bi-Polar Support Alliance). Juanita and her husband, Rudy, live in Houston, Texas, and are the proud parents of two daughters.