Rev. Dr. Scott D. Hannon
St. John Lutheran Church, Amherst, NY
The Jamestown Gazette is a paper that was born not out of boredom or out of a pursuit of the almighty dollar. The paper wasn’t started as a hobby or created to compete in the endless broadcast of news (which more often than not should be called “so-called-news”). Rather, it was simply born from love and pride – namely, from the love and pride my mom has for Jamestown, New York, and the surrounding area.
Growing up my brother, sister, and I couldn’t help but notice how much both our parents loved and took pride in Jamestown. Mom and Dad were not just impressed with Lucille Ball or Roger Tory Peterson or RHJ, rather they knew the smaller stories that were worth telling and worth sharing. We couldn’t drive down a street, haunt a pub, or pass a business without a personal history lesson. In hindsight it seems like it was almost inevitable that my mom would start the Jamestown Gazette. From the cradle she’s been taking notes. Through adolescence she’s collected stories. And to this point she’s eloquently captured the happenings of this community.
Early on my mom asked my brother and I to write for the paper. Shawn and I are Lutheran pastors. Our day job is to proclaim the gospel (gospel = good news). In a world that remains so addicted to bad news, Shawn and I will remain eternally grateful for our mom creating a space in the Gazette for good news.
Years ago, when we told our friends our mom was starting a newspaper, many offered a snide remark about ‘print media’ becoming obsolete (and to be fair, print media has certainly changed over the years). But history has proved mom was right. There was a need for a paper that was bold enough to tell community stories and share community happenings. While other news outlets covered all the bad news from across the globe, the Gazette told the good news happening here, at home. It took courage and vision to take the bold steps the Gazette has taken. Thank you for letting me play a small part.
St. Paul writes, “We always give thanks to God for all of you and mention you in our prayers, constantly remembering before our God and father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope…” Thank you, Mom, for your faithful work, for your labor of love, and for your steadfastness of hope. Thank you for the Gazette and all the good news it shared. Thank you for the love and pride you have for our hometown.
In the Way,