Men’s Fellowship Archive

The Men’s Fellowship at North Church was formed in late Fall 2007 and began its first series of breakfast meetings in March, 2008. These meetings have included  speakers, tours, and various other activities designed to increase fellowship among the men in the church, and to provide them with opportunities to enhance their understanding of various topics.  In addition, some of the events have involved all of the members of the congregation. A small planning group has been involved in arranging and promoting the various activities.

Note that these events are listed below, beginning with the most recent to the earliest meetings.

Saturday, April 29, 2017 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
North Church member and Professor of Social Sciences at Erie Community College (ECC) Azubike Kalu-Nwiwu, Ph.D., spoke on “Fatherless America: The Effects of the Absence of Fathers in Black Communities.”  Originally from Nigeria, Prof. Kalu-Nwiwu has been teaching at ECC for 26 years. He is the proud father of two grown children.

Saturday, March 11, 2017 Tour of Platter’s Chocolates
The entire church community was invited to breakfast at Olympia Family Restaurant, followed by a tour of Platter’s Chocolates. The Platter’s store was open, and the coffee bar served orange chocolate and espresso.

mercuryFebruary 11, 2017 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Dr. Warren Marcus, community educator with JPL NASA, presented “2016 Messenger Mission to Mercury–Bringing New Awareness of the Planet and the Solar System” to the Men’s Fellowship gathering. Men appreciated Marcus’s presentation of video and animation. The audience gained a greater understanding of Mercury based on recent data acquisitions. He focused on new concepts regarding the formation and evolution of the planet and how this connects to our greater knowledge of the solar system and Earth.

hubbard2December 10, 2016 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Pastor Langdon “Buddy” Hubbard of East Aurora Presbyterian spoke on “The Changing Landscape of Faith in America:  Will Christianity Survive?” He recently completed a doctorate at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary.

Have you become concerned about the fact that church attendance is lower in many Christian churches today?  What’s going on?  Are people less religious or are they simply looking in other places for faith than in church?  Does Christianity need to change in order to meet the needs of a changing world?  We explored these and other important questions about how we might be faithful Christians in a changing world.

November 5, 2016 dianaGo Hear Author and Speaker in Lockport
Noted author, speaker and independent scholar of American religion and culture Diana Butler Bass was the Kenan Speaker Series guest. She is the author of Grounded: Finding God in the World: A Spiritual Revolution, and Christianity after Religion.

September 10, 2016 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
North Church’s Men’s Fellowship invited all men and women to come have breakfast with Donna Hartney (author of “The AHA Handbook,” and also America’s top aha” moment expert) to reflect on how these moments can impact one’s spiritual journey.

June 11, 2016 Walking Tour in Downtown Buffalo
Breakfast at the Towne restaurant, followed by the “Masters of Architecture Treasures of Buffalo” walking tour in downtown Buffalo led by Brad Hahn of Explore Buffalo. 14 men on the tour.

May 1, 2016 New York Beer Project
A tour of the brewery, followed by lunch (for men and women)

[This month, November, 2015, was the last meeting of the Men’s Fellowship that was arranged by the leadership that initiated the men’s group in Fall, 2007.]
November 7, 2015 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Final meeting of the year and (supposedly) for some of the “burned out” of the original crew. MC was Jeff F. Purpose was to solicit an infusion of new leadership, what past programs were well received, preferences for types of program and ideas for future programs. 22 men present.

October 10, 2015 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Saul Elkin, past chair of Drama dept. at UB, founder of Shakespeare in the Park and director of the Jewish Reperatory Theater. 37 men and women attended.

September 12, 2015 Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve
The Fellowship invited men and their sons and daughters to a guided walking tour of the Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve in Cheektowaga. The event was preceded by a breakfast at the Cracker Barrel. 14 men and 2 boys attended.

June 14, 2015 Buffalo Bison’s Baseball Game
The Men’s Fellowship invited North Church families to attend a Sunday afternoon Bison baseball game. (This is a traditional summer outing for families.)

May 9, 2015 Horizontal Silo City
Walking tour at Canalside led by Brad Hahn. Lunch provided following the tour. 23 men and women attended.

April 11, 2015 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Different kind of breakfast meeting developed by Jeff Faunce. Aim was to talk voluntarily and interactively about ways in which today’s opportunities, challenges, and problems that our young people are facing are different or similar to the conditions and issues we faced at a similar age.

Saturday, March 7, 2015 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Elder Neil Arnold spoke on “43 North and WNY Business Opportunities.” Neil has held corporate financial positions in the U.K., Canada, and the U.S., and has been actively involved in the investment community. Among the issues are: How can WNY attract “start-up” businesses? And, how is a new generation of entrepreneurs supported? Thanks, Neil.

Saturday, February 14, 2015 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Despite the wintry weather, a dedicated group gathered to hear a very special speaker. Ms. Carol Conklin is the founder and executive director of iOppose (International Organization to Promote Prevention Of Sexual Exploitation), Inc. IOppose is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded to promote intervention efforts to prevent child sexual abuse, and interrupt the early sexualization of children and adolescents among other issues. Carol is also a popular workshop leader and conference speaker. She serves as a consultant for the Buffalo News, and local television and radio stations.

Saturday, November 1, 2014 Tour of the Niagara Aerospace Museum
Twenty-five men attended a breakfast and completed a tour of the Niagara Aerospace Museum at the Niagara Falls International Airport. On display is little-known evidence of the rich past and the continuing record of high technology that has been part of the industrial landscape of WNY. The collection includes the Bell P-9 Airacobra, of which thousands were produced in WNY as part of the Lend Lease Program; a test version of the engine used to blast the astronauts off the surface of the moon, returning them to their Apollo Spacecraft; the actual control panel used during the Apollo moon missions; the Curtiss JN-4 (Jenny), which was the premier World War I trainer aircraft for all of the country’s military services; and much, much more. It was a great way to complete the year’s program activities. Thanks to Colin Drury and Warren Marcus for providing information and photos of the museum and tour.

Saturday, October 4, 2014  Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
“Classic cameras and their images” was the topic of our breakfast. Colin Drury, one of our resident photographers, shared his hobby of collecting old cameras–some of which were on display (but not for sale!).

Saturday, September 13, 2014 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
A “music-religious” theme was the focus, as Pastor Bill Hennessy shared his recent experience in exploring the confluence between Celtic spiritual music, in the Irish tradition, and the sacred and divine.

Thursday, August 7, 2014 Chautauqua Institution
The Men’s Fellowship organized a church-wide trip to the Chautauqua Institution (the “Best Small Town in America” (as determined by the Smithsonian magazine). Featured speakers included Ken Burns and Geoffrey Ward on “The Roosevelts” and Krista Tippett, the hostess of “On Being.”

Sunday, June 8, 2014 Buffalo Bison’s Baseball Game
The Men’s Fellowship organized a congregation-wide trip to the Bison baseball game. Go Bisons!! Go NPC!!

Saturday, May 10, 2014 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Sophia Veffer, a holocaust survivor from Amsterdam, Holland, spoke about her experiences. While her experiences are similar to Anne Frank’s, they also differ. Sophia has dedicated herself to helping others understand the horrors of the holocaust.

Saturday, March 8, 2014 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Steve Cichon, award-winning Buffalo broadcaster and the unofficial historian of Buffalo radio and television, shared the history of Buffalo broadcasting and other information about radio and TV in Western New York. Many thanks to Steve for the exciting and fun opportunity to walk down memory lane and explore Buffalo’s rich history of broadcasting.

Saturday, February 8, 2014 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Many thanks to Don Boyer for leading an interesting discussion on “Wanderings through Contemporary Astronomy.”

Saturday, November 9, 2013 Tour of the Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute
The Men’s Fellowship convened for a breakfast at the Towne Restaurant prior to a visit and tour of the Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute on the Buffalo Medical campus. Our docent was our very own Wayne Schultz, who is a staff scientist on the faculty of the Institute, which specializes in the understanding, prevention, and treatment of many human diseases.

Saturday, October 12, 2013 Tour a Frank Lloyd Wright Home
Menfolk gathered for a reinstated breakfast and tour of a Frank Lloyd Wright home at 57 Tillinghast Place. This event was graciously hosted (and a scrumptious breakfast cooked) by our own Chris Gunther, who once resided at this home. Many thanks to Chris for her hospitality.

Saturday, September 14, 2013 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
A very interesting and insider’s perspective of the Buffalo Bills was presented by John Murphy at the Men’s Fellowship breakfast. As most Buffalonians know, especially Bills’ fans, he is the play-by-play voice of the Buffalo Bills’ Radio Network. The 23 people who attended enjoyed learning about what John does to prepare for each game, his continued amazement of the enthusiasm of Bills’ fans, his comments on whether or not players actually enjoy playing football in the NFL, and his thoughts on the newly signed 10-year lease and the future of the Bills in WNY, as well as many other inquiries. Following John’s introductory remarks, the remainder of the meeting involved his responses to more than a dozen specific questions. The question-and-answer format of the meeting was an excellent way to help kick-off the Men’s Fellowship 2013-2014 program year. Chris D’Angelo was responsible for making the arrangements to have John come as the guest speaker.

Sunday, June 23, 2013 Buffalo Bison’s Baseball Game

The Men’s Fellowship organized a congregation-wide trip to the Bison baseball game. Go Bisons!! Go NPC!!

Sunday, May 12, 2013 Destination: Graycliff Conservancy

graycliffThe Men’s Fellowship sponsored an all-church trip to the Graycliff Conservancy in Derby, NY. This was a summer home and family retreat for the Martin family of Buffalo. It was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. It is unique in that it was designed to meet the requirements of Isabelle R. Martin, who was impaired, and thus required a great deal of light. Therefore the home has a much brighter and more open design than is typical of Wright’s designs.

Saturday, April 13, 2013 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Pat Townsend spoke on “Expressing Faith and Being Reasonable.” Pat has returned from Nairobi where she attended an international conference on witches and problems facing young churches. Using her background in cultural and medial anthropology, she reassessed the science-faith problem—a problem she thought she had already resolved.

Saturday, February 9, 2013 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Pastor Bill Hennessy spoke on “Practicing Community: Reflections on the 220th General Assembly.” The assembled men heard about some of the concerns and issues confronting our local Presbytery and the General Assembly that do not always filter down to the people in the pews. It was the sort of expose that Fellowship planning had been interested in airing for some time now, and what better raconteur than Pastor Bill!

November 3, 2012 UB Football Game
The Men’s Fellowship organized an all-church event—attending a football game between the University at Buffalo and Miami of Ohio. The group had a block of good seats in the first tier. Tickets were made available at a considerable discount by UB as a means of community outreach and encouraging people to become familiar with the university. The Men’s Fellowship was delighted to share this opportunity with you!

October 13, 2012 Downtown Breakfast and Walking Tour
On October 13th the Men’s Fellowship sponsored a congregational tour of some of Buffalo’s historic architectural treasures. The tour was very admirably led by our in-house docent Brad Hahn. Starting off with a breakfast at the Towne Restaurant on Allen St., we then convened at the Market Arcade building on Washington St., to hear of its history as well as that of other historic downtown buildings including the Electric Building, Old Buffalo Savings Bank, City Hall as well as Buffalo’s oldest building (or oldest foundation anyway). We then visited the inside of the recently renovated Lafayette Hotel. Included also was the nationally famous Guaranty building and the interior of St. Paul’s Cathedral with its magnificent stained glass windows. Brad’s background  knowledge, enthusiasm and narratives were fascinating. It was an extremely well conducted tour, thoroughly enjoyed by about 20 North Church folk.

September 8, 2012 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
Peter Martin spoke and led a discussion on what is for many the hectic nature and complications of life. It may help us to know that our own Bible and church understand this. While the Bible offers no simple solutions to complicated life problems; rather, it confronts the messiness of a human story, offering up another story in its place, just as complex perhaps, but with a better ending.

Sunday, June 17, 2012 The Men’s Group organized a congregation-wide trip to the Bison baseball game. Take a beautiful sunny afternoon, a crowd of people in the Coca-Cola Field, excellent pitching, and shouting & clapping North Church folks (women & men, young & old, short and tall), it was inevitable that everyone would have a great time of fun. Thanks to Tony Link for arranging, as he did a year ago, reserved seats along the first-base line, hot dogs, and soft drinks at reduced prices. Go Bisons!! Go NPC!!

May 12, 2012 The Men’s Group, in cooperation with the Property Committee, provided a continental breakfast for those who turned up to give the church’s outside lawn and bushes a “spring clean-up.”

April 14, 2012 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
“Changes in traditional role of women in Islamic society” Dr. Othman Shibly, who was with us for a six-part series on “Christianity and Islam” in January and February, spoke at the men’s breakfast on role changes as a result of recent political changes in the Middle East. Donations were also collected and used to purchase personal care items (toothbrushes, paste, deodorant, shampoo, etc.), for men and women at Friends of Night People.

March 10, 2012 Men’s Fellowship Breakfast Meeting
“Making Connections—the Live or Die Mission of the Church.”  The Rev. Dr. Tom Yorty, Senior Pastor of Westminster Presbyterian Church (Buffalo), returned to NPC to help us celebrate our 4th anniversary. He helped us kick off our men’s group in March, 2008. Tom “…explored the meaning of community, why it is an ‘endangered species’ today, and why the church cannot survive without it. In former times, a certain community was ‘built in’ to our social relationships and patterns of life. This is not to say that the past was some golden age of community, or that technology cannot assist in building community today. Rather the combination of deep loneliness and numbingly busy lives drives the quest for meaning, value, and personal worth. The church competes for allegiance from members and potential members with everything from social networks to yoga studios and fitness clubs to food co-ops. Yet, the church is uniquely equipped to offer a profound sense of belonging and making a difference to the world.” (Donations of peanut butter were also received for the UPC Food Pantry.)

February 11, 2012 Men’s Fellowship breakfast meeting
Thirty men braved the snow, at which time they were invited by Dr. Jessie Poon from UB (and Singapore) to consider the many ways in which the forces of globalization have affected conditions in the 10 countries of southeast Asia. She outlined the ways in which the increasing interactions between the US and these nations have influenced the diversity of religions, agricultural production and trade, the activities of multinational companies, architecture, banking, migration, and urban and national competition.  Also noted is that many of the people within these nations have not benefited equally from these international forces. (Donations of winter clothing were also received for Friends of Night People.)

November 12, 2011 The Men’s Fellowship organized a Men’s Breakfast.  It is difficult to imagine, but a billion people on our planet do not have adequate and clean drinking water!! Charity:Water, founded by Scott Harrison, in its 5 year history, claims to have brought clear and safe water to 2 million people in developing nations around the world. For example, they are drilling freshwater wells, rainwater catchments, and sand filters for thousands of people in Africa. And they accomplish this with 100 percent of your donations going directly into their projects. Overhead is covered under a separate charity. The Men’s Fellowship viewed a video-media presentation, with follow-up discussion, on how this organization is making a significant difference. Imagine what would happen if you had to carry 80 pounds of water in yellow fuel cans for miles to your home, or dig with your children in sand for water, or line up at a well and wait 8 hours for a turn.

Sunday, October 9, 2011 Tour of the Buffalo Central Railroad Terminal
More than 40 North Church folks, on their good behavior, toured the old Buffalo railroad terminal on October 9. The Men’s Group organized the congregation-wide tour, Tony Link arranged particulars for the tour, and Don Boyer (our resident photographer) took 94 photos of the event. Below is a sample of Don’s photos of the event:

September 10, 2011 The Men’s Group hosted a breakfast to discuss domestic violence. Approximately 12,000 phone calls; 450,000 reported annually; 1 out of every 4; ages 18-44; 15 seconds; no boundaries; responsibility; and October, 2011. These data come from the NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence (DV) and from a very informative talk to the Men’s Group by Mary Travers Murphy, who is Executive Director of the Family Justice Center. In order, the above statistics refer to: the number of phone calls received in Erie County in 2010 related to DV; approximate number of such incidences reported annually to police in NYS (only 48% are reported); ratio of women touched by DV in their lifetime; DV is the leading cause of injury to women in the U.S. between the ages of 18-44; every 15 seconds someone in the U.S. becomes a victim of domestic abuse; DV occurs across all socio-economic strata; the victims often believe that DV is their fault; Domestic Violence Awareness Month in Erie County (sponsored by the Erie County Committee on the Status of Women). A very informative and alarming breakfast meeting!!

June 26, 2011  The Men’s Group organized a congregation-wide trip to the Bison baseball game. Take a beautiful sunny afternoon, a crowd of people in the Coca-Cola Field, excellent pitching, and 36 shouting & clapping North Church folks (women & men, young & old, short and tall), it was inevitable that the Bisons would win the baseball game. It was a time of great fun, and thanks to Tony Link for arranging, as he did a year ago, reserved seats along the first-base line, hot dogs, and soft drinks at reduced prices. Go Bisons!! Go NPC!!

May 21, 2011 The Men’s Group, in cooperation with the Property Committee, provided a continental breakfast for those who turned up to give the church’s outside lawn and bushes a “spring clean-up.”

May 14. 2011  For a variety of reasons, a hoped-for, congregation-wide tour of the old Buffalo Central Railroad  Terminal had to be cancelled. An effort is to be made to reschedule the event for the Fall, 2011.

May 7, 2011  Roger Gross, a member of North Church and an enthusiast of military history,  make a slide presentation of his and his son’s travels through France where they visited many of the  memorials, trenches, and other artifacts of World War I. Some of his remarks emphasized the enormous loss of life by all of the protagonists during that unfortunately part of human history.  One of the fictional books that is based upon factual information (Birdsond:  A novel of love and war) served as a background source for his very interesting and informative talk.

April 9, 2011  Professor Michael Stefanone from UB’s Dept. of Communication, emphasized the effects that continuously used, instantaneous modes of communication,  such as Facebook, texting, and Twitter, are having upon our present-day social relationships.  As he noted, we have become producers instead of consumers of news/entertainment, and we are revealing many facts of our personal lives and problems to millions of strangers, while giving little thought to the consequences of such actions.

February, 12, 2011  Rev. Lew Bigler provided the men with a talk that was  focused upon the three-fold nature of God. He spoke of the Trinitarian understanding of God as Creator, Jesus, and Spirit. Trinity is an experience of God. Without experience it is impossible to comprehend the Christian, where the center is not man, nor the Church, but God. He emphasized the point that it is not whether we believe in the Trinity, but rather that we believe in a Trinitarian way.  He described that people experience God in a variety of ways, using the example of light passing through a prism yields a variety of colors. Each time we encounter God,  we encounter God in different ways, and these experiences certainly differ for individuals.

November 9, 2010  Peter Fremming, who is a master coffee roaster at Premier Gourmet in Buffalo, discussed the ethics and ecological conflicts of coffee production in the global economy.  Based upon his 15 years of experience, he talked about the role of coffee as a commodity traded worldwide, and about the ethical choices, ecological conflicts, and ramifications of that trade as it applies to consumers, roasters, multinational corporations, and farmers.

October 9, 2010  Unfortunately, the October meeting had to be cancelled because of the death of a church member.  The event, which was to be a tour of the old Buffalo Central Railroad Terminal, will be re-scheduled sometime during the coming spring, 2011.

September 11, 2010  Dan Kolundiz, the Chief Political and Economic Officer at the Canadian Consulate General in Buffalo, presented his views on “Canada and the U.S.:  A Canadian perspective on bi-national issues.”  He identified some of  the key economic, political, and policy issues that affect the relationships between the two common-border nations.

June 20, 2010  BISONS LOSE, BUT NPC HAS WINNING DAY: Unfortunately, the attendance and cheering of 38 North Church folks at the Bison game on Sunday, June 20, did not enable the team to win.  Nevertheless, a beautiful, sun-filled day with hot dogs, popcorn, soft drinks, and especially great fun and fellowship with friends resulted in a winning outing for kids, women, and men of the congregation.

May 8, 2010  The breakfast meeting was a joint event sponsored by the Men’s Group and the Property Committee.  Following a pancake breakfast, and, in anticipation of spring time in Western New York, Jeff Weaver, a member of our congregation,  showed a DVD titled “The Adirondacks,” which had been prepared in 2008 as a “PBS Home Video”.  Around 9:00, some of the men retreated to the church lawn where weeding and dispersing mulch occurred—in an environment of pelting rain and 40+ mph winds!!!

March 13, 2010  Hoyendahonh.   Al Parker (aka. Hoyendahonh)  of the Seneca Nation (Heron Clan) shared some of the traditions and contributions to the U.S. Constitution of the Six Nation Confederacy in New York State.  He emphasized the Nation’s world view, the sacred role of the turtle and the white pine tree, a 13-moon calendar vis-à-vis the 12-month year, the key role of clan women, and the contribution to the Women’s Right movement that began in NY State.

February 13, 2010  Twenty-six men went on a tour of the Pierce Arrow Museum in downtown Buffalo.  Before admiring the vintage automobiles and other transportation modes at the Museum (including a red 1957 Ford Thunderbird and a black 1934 Pearce Arrow), the men attended a breakfast at the Towne Restaurant on Allen Street.

November 14, 2009  Following a pancake breakfast, Dr. Gerry Rising, a weekly writer for the Buffalo News, engaged the men in a question-and-answer session on various topics related to the WNY environment (e.g., the effects of wind turbines on bats, the spread of diseases to local trees, how not to get rid of moles, and the “art” of bird watching).  Some members from the Amherst Presbyterian Church also attended the breakfast.

October 17, 2009   A Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation [FBI] who is a member of North Church, presented, with understandable limitations, an insiders view of the history, priorities, organization, recruiting, and common misconceptions of the FBI.

September 12, 2009  Following a time of fellowship, where the men discussed three “ice-breaking” questions, a visit from a “mystery” guest “appeared.”   Turns out that the mystery guest was Johnny Carson—woops, the “late” Johnny Carson.  Unfortunately, Carson was not able to attend so we viewed some of Carson’s clips from his 1960-1970 TV shows. For many of the men, the clips brought back fond and funny memories of days gone by.  Although some of the younger folks didn’t recall the shows, they did participate in the laughter.

May 16, 2009  “Pancakes Galore, Senior Highs, and Women.” Thirty some people, including eight Senior High youth and nine women, were treated to Tony Link’s and Ed Eisenlord’s buttermilk pancakes, along with Bill Clark’s sausages, at the Men’s Group breakfast on May 16.  The event was co-sponsored with the Property Committee and its annual clean-up-day around the outside of the church.

March 14, 2009  The impacts of the current recessionary and  economic environment upon Western New York relative to the country as a whole and to Upstate NY in particular,  were highlighted by Dr. Richard Deitz, who is the Regional Economics Officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

February 14, 2009  The Men’s Group had a Valentine “Party.” On Valentine’s Day, 28 adults, 3 young girls, and 4 young boys, had fun talking about what it means to be a father. Helping us sort through this question was Rev. Dr. Howard Boswell, Jr. , Pastor of Kenmore Presbyterian Church.  Among the questions that the attendees considered was what is one of the things they recalled that their fathers always said when they were growing up, and what did the fathers mean by that saying?

November 15, 2008  A very educational and entertaining tour of the various exhibits at the Buffalo & Erie County Historical Society, with our own Jeff Weaver as one of the one of the docents. This event was followed by the men having  lunch at the Family Tree Restaurant, and sharing in a time of fellowship.

October 18, 2008  An overview of UB’s basketball operations was the topic, and Kevin Heck, a member of our congregation and an Assistant Coach at UB, our speaker.  He provided insights regarding the ongoing recruiting efforts at the university.  After a hot breakfast and Kevin’s enthusiastic talk, the men spent some time renewing fellowship and finding out some very “juicy” things about each other’s past.

September 13, 2008  Rev. Bill Hennessy, our new senior pastor,  led us in a discussion of our own personal and family histories and what it means to be a “pretty good person.” As he noted, all of us have ups and downs in our personal and family histories, and these varying paths and ambiguities impact us as we strive to achieve the qualities of courage, gratitude, humility, integrity, and compassion. Preceding the breakfast and after, the men talked about the history behind their middle names—of course a few of the men did not have middle names, which was interesting in itself!!!

May 10, 2008  After recalling who our earliest heroes were, the men listened to Dr. Claude Welch (UB’s Political Science Department) as he highlighted some of the major economic, political, and humanitarian issues facing African nations in the present decade.

April 12, 2008  Professor Colin Drury from UB’s Dept. of Industrial Engineering provided an overview of security issues facing the U.S. since September 11.  A time of fellowship focusing upon some of our earliest memories of attending church.

March 8, 2008  Twenty-three people braved the snow on Saturday morning, March 8, to kickoff the newly formed Men’s Group.  After spending some time getting to know each other better, the group listened to Rev. Dr. Tom Yorty (Senior Pastor at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Buffalo, and a former Associate Pastor of our congregation) as he shared some thoughts on the topic:  “I came away stronger:  Why men’s groups make a difference.”  He talked about how difficult it sometimes is for men to share their feelings (they want to be “human doings” not “human beings”),  how increasingly important it is for small church groups  to respond to the need for deeper spirituality, and why men’s wives are correct—men do need to be in a church-related men’s group!!  He also warned us that men’s groups in churches do not endure for any long period of time. So, since that time, we decided to try and make Tom “eat his words”!!!!!!!

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