(ONE) Church’s Door

(ONE) Church’s Door

Contributing Writer Pastor Shawn Hannon Hope Lutheran Church Arcade, NY I’ve become increasing certain in recent days that one of the devil’s favorite games to play with the church is to convince us that our similarities are actually differences, or, at the very least, to convince us that our subtle differences are church-dividing. Consider the […]

All Vine No Grapes

All Vine No Grapes

Contributing Writer Pastor Scott Hannon St. John Lutheran Church Amherst, NY The Lutheran camp on Lake Chautauqua is a stunning piece of property that features picturesque views, towering trees, serene trails, and dynamic landscapes. Like the camp counselors who witness to Jesus throughout the year, the very ground of the camp seems to proclaim God’s […]

A Million Questions

A Million Questions

Contributing Writer Pastor Shawn Hannon Hope Lutheran Church Arcade, NY My daughter, Quinn, is at that age where she has a million questions. At the top of her list of things to understand at the moment is heaven. Many bedtimes these days are accompanied by 20 minutes of questions and conversation around what happens to […]

Easter Storms

Easter Storms

Contributing Writer Pastor Scott Hannon St. John Lutheran Church Amherst, NY I’m beginning to think that Mother Nature gets moody on Sunday mornings. Recently, the weather in Buffalo has been notably bad, particularly on the weekends. On Easter morning I had to scrape ice off my windshield and flurries fell during worship. Last week we […]

Bystanders

Bystanders

Contributing Writer Pastor Scott Hannon St. John Lutheran Church Amherst, NY As I read the story of Jesus’ Last Supper, betrayal, trial, persecution, suffering, and death last week, I couldn’t help but notice a few characters that escaped me before. You may be familiar with the main characters – Jesus and Judas, Peter and Pilate, […]

Produce Joy

Produce Joy

Contributing Writer Pastor Shawn Hannon Hope Lutheran Church Arcade, NY What is it like to spend time with a really kind person?  You know, the kind of person who always seems to see the good in the world and others… The kind of person who always seems to rise above the gossip, pettiness, and quarrelling at […]

We Are God’s Temple

We Are God’s Temple

“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you?” (1 Cor. 6:19). As a young person in the church I was told what that meant. It meant no tattoos, no sex outside of marriage, and ‘just saying no’ to drugs. And to some extent I certainly still believe the sentiment […]

Shout for Joy to the Lord

Shout for Joy to the Lord

Contributing Writer Pastor Scott Hannon St. John Lutheran Church Amherst, NY Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth, burst into jubilant song with music. Psalm 98:4 I’ve always thought the church was kind of like an orchestra—only in lieu of strings, reed instruments, percussion and brass, we have teachers, singers, bakers and worship […]

We Are God’s Building

Without trying I can think of two Sunday Schools immediately that remind us the church is not a building. Can you sing the ones I’m thinking of?   The first says, “The church is not a building where people go to pray, it’s not made out of sticks and stones, it’s not made out of clay. […]

Crutches

Crutches

Contributing Writer Pastor Scott Hannon St. John Lutheran Church Amherst, NY I have a confession to make. I can’t skate. Despite growing up in Western New York where playing hockey seems to be a childhood rite of passage and where backyard rinks still abound, I never learned to do it. And it was never an […]

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