December 1997 Portrait and Playing Basketball in High School 1972
Marriage to Annie Brown in 2009 and Daughter Juliette in 2016
John Donnelly Callahan was born on May 27, 1955, in Los Angeles, California. His father was an engineer and his mother was a grammar school teacher (both retired). He has two sisters, Mary and Terese, 1 and 2 years younger than himself. Mary is a professor of accounting at Kennesaw State University (Northwest Georgia). Terese is a Berkeley graduate, business woman, and mother. Both sisters are married. John grew up and has spent his entire life in Southern California except for living in Northern California while attending U.C. Berkeley from 1975 to 1977.
John was fascinated at a very early age with astronomy and anthropology. At 5 years old he asked his mother to buy him a book about astronomy. Also at 5 he looked in a book on Western Civilization and saw the busts of the various prehistoric men, such as Cro-Magnon, Neanderthals, etc. In the 9th grade John aspired and planned to study astronomy. He received a BA degree from U.C. Berkeley in 1977 with majors in both astronomy and physics. In school and throughout his life John has also studied and kept up an active interest in anthropology. In 1978 he was hired by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. John worked in the field of spacecraft navigation with television pictures. He left JPL in 1987 (although he did part-time consulting until 1989) to work for a number of other aerospace companies involved with such project as F16 trainers, advanced sensors and phenomenology, SDI, and Space Shuttle experiments.
John was raised in a traditional Catholic church but was for the most part an agnostic. However, having a scientific disposition he realized that the universe was one of order and rules which governed its operation. Further, these laws were observable and discernible. John tried to find fulfillment in life but became withdrawn, frustrated, and depressed. This sparked him, in the 9th grade, to undertake a determined search for truth. Four years later, in his freshman year of college, he realized who Jesus was and became a Christian.
Through careful reasoning, attempting to be as objective and independent as possible, John concluded that Jesus was indeed God. This conclusion came shortly after studying the book The Life of Christ, written in 1941 by the Italian, Catholic author Giuseppe Ricciotti. Also by studying the same book John came to an understanding of man's basic spiritual problems and how men can be put right with God and receive eternal life. The year was 1974. The book was given to John as a Christmas present in 1973 by Marta Ruble, a dear cousin.
John did not abandon his understanding of the universe in the realms of astronomy and anthropology; although there was much pressure from most other Christians to do so. He was more amazed at the incorrect understanding of his fellow Christians than he was persuaded to change his thinking. As the years passed John was more and more impressed that these were not matters to be taken lightly. To him it was important whether the Bible was perfectly correct or not, whether man evolved, how old the Earth was, the true powers of Satan, and so forth. Finally the desire to write a book became too strong to resist, and the leading of the Holy Spirit was clearly evident. The book was begun in 1981 and finished in 1985. A second edition appeared in 1986, and a third, Internet version in 1996.
Faith & Reason Ministries was founded in 1989, and, having saved and invested well, John left full-time work as an aerospace engineer in 1996 to concentrate on the ministry. He occasionally tutors math and physics part time.