Mark Renn

Mark Robert Renn was born outside of Boston, Massachusetts, and has since lived all over the country. Kingwood is the fourth Texan city Renn has lived in, with Houston, Austin, and Fort Forth. Renn has been an associate pastor in Kingwood for the past five years. Growing up, Renn lived in a Christian home, but he recounts his religion strengthening in college when he learned what it truly meant to have a burden for the lost. After college, he became a youth director in Houston for four years, then went into seminary to full-time church work as a pastor.

Renn details the trajectory of his beginnings as a pastor, where his family moved, what the different communities meant to him. The pastor had experience with flood victims before Harvy when he volunteered in San Marcos after the Memorial Day floods. When Harvey hit, Renn admitted that his preparation could have been better. Harvey brought power outages, rain damage, wind damage, and Renn recalls how he and his family handled those issues. Due to the release of the Conroe dams, many church fellows suffered two to four feet of flooding in their homes, bringing the church community together to help those affected. Renn set out in a canoe with his son to volunteer support to those who needed it. Once the flooding subsided, Kingwood had to act quickly to fight against mold and other side effects from the rain. To prevent such things, the church separated individuals into groups who traveled to different homes, helping fix anything that needed repairing. Another avenue for help included the creation of a church fund of approximately $80,000. They rented a Bobcat to go throughout the neighborhood with some of the funds, removing debris from homes. Upon reflection, Renn estimated over one hundred people helped and supported the community post-Harvey. To account for the hope among the devastation, Renn recounts a family’s story that he believed to be one of inspiration in dark times. Another inspiring effect from Harvey is the organization Houston Responds that seeks to support those in Houston and surrounding areas for those in any situation that demands help.