DAN MCKNIGHT | LEAD PASTOR
Dan’s the lead pastor at Kaw Prairie, responsible for vision, strategy, preaching and staff management. After growing up in Illinois farm country and the Chicago suburbs, he got his degree in Constitutional Democracy and English Lit at Michigan State. Dan worked his way through seminary as an ESL teacher and security guard on Chicago’s south side, and was mentored in a Puerto Rican neighborhood church on the west side.
Dan married his high-school sweetheart Laura during seminary, while she worked on a graduate degree at University of Chicago. They lived for a year in Frankfurt, Germany — Dan as a pastoral intern and Laura as an instructor at the former US military base in Aschaffenburg. After getting his M.Div. and being ordained in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, they moved to the north Chicago suburbs, where Dan served as a noticeably-balding youth pastor. He used some of those student-wrangling skills to then plant an ancient-future church in the western suburbs, where he pastored until late 2003.
Dan & Laura then felt called to plant a church a second time — this time with an amazing core group here in Johnson County, KS. So Dan and Laura moved here in 2004 with their two small sons Jeremy and Eli, who now tower over them. Laura works now as Grants Manager at Donnelly College, Jeremy at UPS, and Eli on homework, listening to Twitch with his earbuds in. Dan enjoys family game nights, running and skiing, watching German cop shows and American football, and most of all, working in the yard in just about in any weather. Mostly though, he loves laughing with his family, friends, and fellow disciples at Kaw Prairie, dog-walking dates with Laura, and quiet time on the deck with the Bible and a beverage.
Dan’s favorite Bible verse is John 3:17. His favorite foods are lamb shawarma and smoked salmon. Not at the same time.