The Rev. Dr. Russell J. Levenson, Jr.

Denomination: The Episcopal Church (TEC)
Organization: St. Martin's Episcopal Church - Houston, TX

The Reverend Dr. Russell Jones Levenson, Jr.  was born and reared in Birmingham, Alabama. He and Laura, wife of over twenty-five years have three children.

Russell received a Bachelor of Arts cum laude from Birmingham-Southern College in 1984. Upon his graduation, he was awarded the College's highest service recognition as the recipient of the President's Service Award. Prior to entering seminary, he worked at Birmingham-Southern as an Assistant to the President of the College and later as Minister to Youth at St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Birmingham, Alabama.

He received a Master of Divinity Degree from Virginia Theological Seminary in 1992. While at the seminary, he served as President of his entering class and as a member of the seminary's Executive and Curriculum Committees.

Following his graduation from VTS, he served as Assistant University Chaplain, under the Reverend Dr. Samuel Lloyd, until he was called as Associate Rector at St. Luke's in Birmingham, where he served under the Reverend Dr. John Claypool for four years. While in the Diocese of Alabama, he served a three year term on the Secretariat, serving as the Head Spiritual Director for Cursillo in Alabama and he completed hisDoctor of Ministry at Beeson Divinity School in 1997.

He was also called to be the rector of The Episcopal Church of the Ascension in Lafayette, Louisiana in 1997. During his tenure, the parish nearly doubled its budget, gained over 500 new members and underwent over $5 million in capital improvements. While in the Diocese of Western Louisiana he served on the Executive Committee for three years and as a member of the Commission on Communication.

In 2002, Dr. Levenson was called as the fifteenth rector of historic Christ Church Parish in Pensacola, Florida. During his tenure, over 600 new members joined the parish; and the parish's budget grew substantially as did its commitment to outreach, mission, and Christian Education. In the Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast, he served on the Diocesan Commission for Communication and the Commission for Stewardship, the Diocesan Commission for Church Growth and Evangelism and the Standing Committee.

In the fall of 2007, Dr. Levenson became the fourth rector of St. Martin's Church in Houston, Texas. Lord George Carey, who preached at Levenson's institution shortly after his arrival, remarked, "Russell is an outstanding man whom I admire very much . . . a great preacher who gives sparkling sermons."

Dr. Levenson has been a featured speaker and retreat leader in North and South Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana and Massachusetts. He has had nearly 50 articles published in magazines and journals including The Living Church, The Anglican Digest, The Episcopal Teacher, Decision Magazine and The Sewanee Theological Review. His first book, Provoking Thoughts is a collection of Lenten Meditations with a foreword written by Lord Carey. He is the author of several books including Preparing Room: An Advent Companion, with a foreword by Ann Wilkinson Claypool. His latest book is Witness to Dignity: The Life and Faith of George H. W. and Barbara Bush.

Levenson's ministry springs from a firm commitment to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, and he continues to uphold St. Martin's commitment to an Anglican expression of the evangelical, orthodox, and Biblical Christian faith. He places a high priority on the continued building of membership through faithful preaching and teaching, discipleship, Christian education, outreach and active evangelism.



Day1 Weekly Programs by The Rev. Dr. Russell J. Levenson, Jr.

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Russell Levenson: Hold On to Jesus

Tuesday April 18, 2023
Russell Levenson invites us to let Jesus out of whatever box we've tried to put him in, and take hold of him. That will be a ride of a lifetime--and a life beyond this life that lasts for all eternity.

Russ Levenson: How Do You Love Thee?

Tuesday February 14, 2017
Dr. Russ Levenson helps us understand what love is, and is not, and how it is lived out. And it’s not complicated: first, we’re called to love God--our lives dedicated to hearing and doing God’s will for us. Second, we’re called to love our neighbors--and not just those in our inner circles. And third, we’re called to love ourselves--often the hardest to do.

Russ Levenson: Living Happily Ever After

Tuesday February 07, 2017
The Rev. Russ Levenson explains that in Deuteronomy, Moses tries to beat a bit of truth into stubborn heads, essentially saying 'you are not going to find your way to happiness by ignoring the one who created the concept””happiness and life are only found in following him.' For Jesus, to be righteous means being in a right relationship with God, and that kind of relationship bears the fruit of right actions, not the other way around.

Making Straight the Way

Tuesday November 29, 2011
As we continue in Advent, the Rev. Dr. Russell Levenson guides us through Mark's account of the coming of John the Baptist, and helps us wrestle with his call to repent.

Two-Minute Warning

Tuesday November 22, 2011
In his sermon for the first Sunday in Advent, the Rev. Dr. Russell Levenson explains that Advent gives us an opportunity to get our heads back in the game and get to work for Jesus' sake.

Articles by The Rev. Dr. Russell J. Levenson, Jr.

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Russ Levenson Jr.: "Come, O Holy Spirit, Come" - A Pentecost Sermon

Thursday May 28, 2020
In a sermon prepared for Day1 that had to be canceled, Dr. Russell J. Levenson Jr. invites us all to welcome the coming of the Holy Spirit into our lives.

Russell Levenson Jr: "Peace, Be Still": What to Do When the Coronavirus Comes Knocking

Sunday March 22, 2020
In a special message in these times of fear over the Coronavirus, the Rev. Dr. Russell Levenson, Jr., offers hope and calls us to prayer-filled faith.