The Chapel is now closed for the 2023 Season!
The Chapel is now closed for the 2023 Season!
Venerable Dr. John Course
Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Fonthill, Ontario.
The Venerable Dr. John Course is in his forty-second year of ordained ministry in the Anglican Diocese of Niagara where he has served as rector in four of its parishes.
He has a PhD in Ancient Near-Eastern Language and Literature and has taught the introductory course to the Old Testament at Trinity College, Toronto.
He is currently the Archdeacon of Brock and rector of Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Fonthill, Ontario on a part-time basis.
His outside interests include downhill skiing, golf, and woodworking.
Rev. Dr. Skip Ferguson, retired, Presbyterian Church USA, Buffalo, NY
Rev. Dr. Skip Ferguson is an Honorably Retired minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA).
Prior to his retirement, he pastored churches in Northern Virginia and the Hudson River Valley and, also served as a hospital chaplain. He earned his master’s and doctorate degrees from Princeton Theological Seminary, and was ordained by the Presbytery of New York City.
Most recently, he served as Transitional Pastor at Orchard Park Presbyterian Church. He has also guest preached at Westminster Presbyterian Church, Kenmore Presbyterian Church and, Lafayette Presbyterian Church. In 2019 he was Interim Executive Director of the Graycliff Conservancy.
He began his career practicing law, first in Chicago and then in Buffalo, before shifting to the business world, where he ran Alpine Sports, worked as an international consultant and, as Editor of Management and Finance publications at the Economist Group in New York City. He earned his BA from St. Lawrence University, MBA from the Wharton School and, his law degree from Cornell Law School.
He also was a contributing editor for Knowledge@Wharton for 7 years, focusing on leadership and organizational transformation; edited two series in the Financial Times (one on Finance, the other on Marketing); and have written articles for The Christian Century and Presbyterian Outlook.
Rev. Jan Hubbard, Retired, United Methodist Church, East Buffalo, NY.
Rev. Jan Hubbard is a retired United Methodist Elder who has served the United Methodist Church congregations in Western New York for 30 plus years.
In addition to serving in various parishes around Western New York, she has also worked as an Intentional Interim Pastor and served most recently at St. James United Church of Christ in Hamburg, NY.
Jan is happily married to her husband, Pastor Dr. Langdon (Buddy) Hubbard who has been serving his own congregation, the First Presbyterian Church of East Aurora for over 20 years now.
Together, the Hubbard’s have two grown children, Bethany and Daniel.
In retirement, Jan uses her Licensed Master Social Worker Degree (LMSW) with the Samaritan Counseling Center to help those struggling with grief, mental health and marital relational issues.
She loves being retired and able to spend time caring for her two grandchildren, Zoey and Jack and, golfing with husband, Pastor Buddy, though she wishes she could keep the ball out of the sand traps.
Rabbi Alex Lazarus-Klein, Congregation Shir Shalom, Williamsville, NY.
Rabbi Alex Lazarus-Klein came to Buffalo in the Fall of 2008 to serve as the rabbi of Temple Sinai, now called Congregation Shir Shalom. He brings warmth, creativity, and compassion to the role of synagogue rabbi. A trained chaplain and gifted teacher, he is actively engaged in all aspects of communal life, from helping people with their everyday struggles, to intricate details of synagogue governance.
Rabbi Alex is a respected leader in the Buffalo area, serving on many local boards including: the Buffalo Board of Rabbis, the Network of Religious Communities, Jewish Family Services, the Bureau of Jewish Education, Jewish Community Center, and the Coalition of Economic Justice. He has served as president of the Network of Religious Communities. He is also on the national board of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association out of Wyncote, Pennsylvania. He works with leaders of all faiths, to improve the quality of life in Western New York and beyond.
A 2004 graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College he also holds Masters and Bachelor Degrees from the Jewish Theological Seminary, as well as a Bachelors degree from Columbia University. Before coming to Buffalo he served as rabbi of Temple B´nai Abraham in Bordentown, New Jersey, and directed the Community Partnership Program for the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia.
He currently resides in Amherst, with his wife Ashirah, and three young children, Jarah, Boaz, and Noam.
Rev. Dr. Todd E. Leach currently serves as Senior Pastor of Westminster Presbyterian Church • Buffalo, NY.
Rev. Leach was ordained in 2007, and previously served as Associate Pastor for Missions at Shadyside Presbyterian Church in Pittsburgh.
During his thirteen-year tenure, he successfully built and implemented their mission program with a focus on sending members into the community where, in his words, “God’s kingdom is actively breaking into the world.”
Previously, he taught science in the Columbus Public Schools (Ohio), served as Executive Director of the Delaware County Housing Coalition (Pennsylvania), and was Director of Mission and Deacon Ministries at Media Presbyterian Church (suburban Philadelphia).
He has also led numerous rural, urban, national, and international mission initiatives.
Rev. Leach brings a wealth of diverse educational and career experiences to Westminster. He holds a Doctor of Ministry in Public Theology from Drew Theological School, a Master of Divinity from Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Ohio University.
Rev. Leach, his wife, Linda, and their teenage daughters, Nadia, Jean and Vinodhini Grace (Dhini), are excited to be a part of the Western New York community..
Rev. Jacob C. Ledwon , Pastor of St. Joseph University Parish, Buffalo, NY.
Father Ledwon was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Buffalo in 1972. He has a B.A. in Philosophy, an M.A. in Theology from St. John Vianney Seminary and a B. Mus. in Piano Performance from Manhattanville College. He earned a Ph.D. in Musicology from SUNY Buffalo where he specialized in the study of medieval chant manuscripts.
Father Ledwon has been the Pastor of St. Joseph University Parish for the past 33 years. St. Joseph University Parish has been cited in national publications as a model of engaging liturgy for young people. Recently it was one of twelve parishes from across the country invited by Parish Catalyst in California to participate in a cohort to address the question of outreach to young adults, and it was chosen by Daniel Markham for his book, 52 Masses, as the parish to represent New York State as a model for vibrant worship.
In 2005 Father Ledwon was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Niagara University for his “contributions to the religious and cultural life of Western New York.” He is currently working on his “bucket list,” completing a book, entitled Twenty Questions: I’m thinking about life, and preparing songs for his third CD, Songs for Goodnight and Goodbye.
Rev. Jan Mahle
East Aurora Christian Church, East Aurora, NY.
The Rev. Jan Mahle is currently serving as pastor of the East Aurora Christian Church. Prior to being called as pastor, she served as a Campus Minister at D'Youville College in Buffalo, NY. for 20 years. She retired from that position in January 2020.
While serving at D'Youville, she was the transition pastor for a number of congregations. You might say she is a Church Woman United because she has served various congregations to include the United Church of Christ, the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the American Baptist faiths. As an aside, she considers herself to be a "cultural Catholic".
She graduated from Hiram College, attended Vanderbilt Divinity School and completed her Masters of Divinity at Methodist Theological School in Columbus, OH. She was ordained in 1982 although she had been serving as an Associate Pastor since 1977.
Jan met her husband Marvyn while at college. They have been married 44 years. They have 2 wonderful adult children plus a great son-in-law and 2 fabulous granddaughters.
Rev. Richard W. Neal
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 1080 Main St., Buffalo
The Rev. Richard W. Neal serves as intentional interim pastor of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Buffalo, New York. He has more than forty years of experience as a pastor in Lutheran, Presbyterian, United Church of Christ, and United Methodist congregations in Southern Illinois, New Jersey, Vermont, and New York, including eight terms as an intentional interim pastor. Rich believes every change is an opportunity to enrich life. “Change happens all the time,” he says, “and we don’t have a choice about it. But we can choose whether to resist change or embrace it as an opportunity for discovery and growth. When you embrace change creatively, a richer life is possible.”
Rich came to parish ministry after a career in scholarly publishing as a book designer and production director. In addition to nurturing individual and congregational growth through creative change, he particularly enjoys the ministries of preaching, spiritual guidance, and adult education. He lives in Snyder, New York, with his wife Sheryl.
Sr. Denise A. Roche
Grey Nuns of the Sacred Heart
Sister Denise Roche is a member of the Grey Nuns of the Sacred Heart, a Catholic congregation of women religious. She currently serves as president of the Grey Nuns and works out of the central office of the congregation in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the United States.
Sister Denise, a native of Buffalo, New York, entered the Grey Nuns in September 1961. After teaching in an elementary school for two years, Sister Denise pursued graduate education, and received her doctorate in sociology from the University of Massachusetts in 1976. She then taught sociology at D’Youville College in Buffalo, New York.
In 1979, Sister Denise became president of D’Youville College – now D’Youville University – and continued to serve in that capacity for 37 years. When she retired, Sister Denise became Chair of the Board of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority (NFTA) and completed her term five years later. By that time, Sister Denise had been elected president of the Grey Nuns. She is a member of the Board of the WNED Foundation.
Sister Denise has a great fondness for Canada, because of her many experiences there during her years in Buffalo and also because St. Marguerite D’Youville, foundress of the Grey Nuns, lived and worked in Montreal in the 1700’s. There are now four congregations of Grey Nuns in Canada and one in the United States.
Rev. Brian Rotach, received a Master of Divinity Degree, at Howard University, Washington DC. He is a retired Pastor of Seneca Street United Methodist Church, a mission church to the challenged Seneca-Babcock neighborhood of Buffalo.
When jobs left during the rust belt era (and with it many people), the congregation at Seneca Street United Methodist Church went from several 100 people in size to about a dozen.
In 1994, Rev. Brian and his wife, Cheryl Bird, were sent to close this church. They soon realized how disastrous that would be for one of the poorest neighborhoods Buffalo.
Together, Rev. Brian and Cheryl somehow managed to keep it open for the children. Because the community surrounding it could not sustain its finances, they fortunately adopted it. They paid the heating bills and have funded a lot of renovations. They also funded the summer reading camp. In addition, the church helps to run the after school tutoring program.
Brian and Cheryl dedicated their lives in creating an organization so kids could get free lunches and access public funding using the church building. And, they enlisted other churches in the area to help support the church so it stayed open.
"Nothing we do here is for the church," Rotach said, explaining that all of the programs run by the church are for the benefit of the children in what he describes as "one of the poorest neighborhoods in Buffalo."
"We keep this building open because the neighborhood needs a church. Nothing else is left here," said Rotach, who also has served as pastor of Woodside United Methodist Church in South Buffalo.
The effort of such a poor congregation to fill such a big gap in a truly needy neighborhood is surely immense.
29 years later, it is still open and has seen solid results in the community it serves.
Rev. Dr. Ray Schooler, D. Min.
American Baptist International Ministries, King of Prussia, PA
Rev. Ray was born and raised in Texas, but ministry has provided opportunities to live and serve in several different places. He has served in local church ministry in several capacities including, Senior Pastor. Ray has served on the American Baptist Churches (USA), and as President of the Board of International Ministries (IM). It was in this role with IM that he discovered a passion for Global Missions.
In 2007 he went on staff with IM as the Sr. Dir. of Donor Development and Church Relations. In this role he travels a great deal and that has allowed him to visit all over the US and several International Countries, mostly Third World or Developing countries, where the International Ministries Missionaries are serving.
Ray has been a guest speaker at Holloway Chapel for several years and always enjoys the “Holloway Experience” and especially the fine folks who make up this unique gathering.
Ray and his wife (Gail) live in Buffalo (Lancaster), NY and have five adult sons, two daughter-in-laws and three grandchildren. He enjoys playing golf and manages to squeeze in a few rounds in between his trips and enjoys volunteering at Roswell Park with the Spiritual Care Department.
Richard E. Zajac, known in many circles as “Fr. Duke” has been a staff chaplain at Sisters of Charity Hospital in Buffalo for the past 39 years.
He is presently serving on many Boards and Committees throughout the community including Catholic Medical Partners, Town of Amherst Meals on Wheels, Seminary Alumni Association, as well as the Perinatal Bereavement Network.
He has chaired or co-chaired the Sister’s Hospital Ethics Committee since its inception in 1984, and serves on the Ethics Committee for the Catholic Health Care System of Western New York.
He served on the National Advisory Council of the National Association of Catholic Bishops, and served as the Chairman of the Board of the Life Transition Center as well as the South Buffalo Community Development Association.
He served on the Boards of the Upstate New York Transplant Services, Baker Victory Services, Bishop Timon High School, WNY Peace Center, Catholic Health System’s Corporate Members Board, Buffalo Area Metropolitan Ministries (BAMM), Sister’s Hospital Credit Union as well as the American Cancer Society.
He has also served 7 terms on the Priests’ Council of the Diocese of Buffalo, 2 terms on the Priests’ Personnel Board and 3 terms on the Priests’ Council of New York State.
In his spare time, he has authored four books: Life Injections I , II , III & IV, and is presently writing a book on preaching at funerals for priests, ministers, and deacons. He enjoys reading, smoking a good cigar and baseball for which he’s been an officer of the Parochial Baseball League since 1969 and was inducted into the Western New York Baseball Hall of Fame in 2007.