Patty LaRoche: The Prophet’s Error, Part 1

When I first read 1 Kings 13:1-34, I was frustrated. With each additional reading, I became more frustrated. God gives so many people second-and- third-and-fourth chances, but this poor guy gets one. And it’s not even his fault. Well, not much. He just lets down his guard for one teensy, weensy minute.

Throughout the entire chapter, this prophet is referred to as a “man of God.” No name. Just “a man of God.” Obviously, he’s done something right. As the story unfolds, this man of God travels from Judah and confronts King Jeroboam who is setting up worship at the altar at Bethel, defying God’s decree that there would be only one altar—in Jerusalem.

The man of God is there to rain on Jeroboam’s idol-worship parade and prophesies that one day a descendent of King David named Josiah will sacrifice priests on that altar. (This came true 340 years later.) For proof, “the altar will split in two.” As one who hates David’s dynasty, the enraged king points to the prophet and commands his attendants to arrest him. Immediately the king’s arm shrivels up and the altar splits apart. This is no minor detail. Proper ritual required the sacrificial ashes be disposed of in a “clean” place (Lev. 4:12; 6:10-11). Contact with the ground nullified the sacrifice. Big trouble for the king.

I can only imagine Jeroboam’s horror. He begs for the man of God to intercede to the Lord to restore his hand. God answers his prayer.

So far, the man of God has lived up to his name.

In return, the king invites the prophet to his palace for a meal and a gift. The man of God answers the king, “Even if you were to give me half your possessions, I would not go with you, nor would I eat bread or drink water here. For I was commanded by the word of the LORD: ‘You must not eat bread or drink water or return by the way you came.’”  The man of God obeys and takes another road home. Clearly, he desires to follow God’s directive.

Word spreads, and an old prophet in the area hears from his sons about the miracle at the Altar of Bethel. He saddles his donkey, chases after the man of God, finds him under a tree and invites him to return for a meal. The man of God reiterates what he has told the king.

The old prophet answers, “I too am a prophet, as you are. And an angel said to me by the word of the LORD: ‘Bring him back with you to your house so that he may eat bread and drink water.’” (But he was lying to him.) So, the man of God returns with him and shares a meal.

Do you have the same questions I have? How was Prophet #1 to know he is being deceived? Why did Prophet #2 go to such efforts to seduce this man of God? Was it so he could brag to his friends that a celebrity had been in his house?

Trust me, there are no answers to these questions. All I know is, at this point I’m really ticked off at Prophet #2.

Let’s pick up in verse 20: “While they were sitting at the table, the word of the LORD came to the old prophet who had brought him back. He cried out to the man of God, “This is what the LORD says: ‘You have defied the word of the LORD and have not kept the command the LORD your God gave you. You came back and ate bread and drank water in the place where he told you not to eat or drink. Therefore your body will not be buried in the tomb of your ancestors.’”


No apologies. No “I’m so sorry.” No “I’ve really screwed up this time.” No “Lord, take me in this man of God’s place.” Nothing (except prophesying his visitor’s doom).

See why I find this frustrating?

If you’re needing a little more frustration, just wait until next week when we will look at the rest of the story.

Stained Glass Windows Discovered In Remodel Of Downtown Building

Stained glass windows are discovered in the renovation of the building at Wall and Main Streets. Pictured is Randy Lafferty, R and L Contracting LLC, the contractor for the remodel.

Since November workers have been remodeling the building at 2 North Main for Dr. Timothy Crawford.

During the remodel which will house Crawford’s future dental office, some architectural features have been discovered.

Above some columns and above the southern windows of the building,  art-deco style stained glass windows were discovered.

“It was a good find,” Randy Lafferty, R and L Contracting LLC, said.

Stained glass windows that had been covered up are being restored to be showcased in Dr. Tim Crawford’s future office at 2 N. Main. Randy Lafferty shows the location of the stained glass above the southern windows of the building. The windows opened in for ventilation originally. Current plans are to put lights behind them to show them off, Lafferty said.
The original marble tiles on the front of the old vault will be showcased in the future dental office, Lafferty said.

In the interior, marble was found on the outside of an old vault.

“We are going to keep the marble work and try to find a clock to fit (in the round hole where a clock once was), Lafferty said.

The remodel will produce an office area with 3,000 square feet, Lafferty said.

“Including going to the next office over, west, the old barber shop,” he said.

There is no deadline for the remodel completion at this time, Lafferty said.

Crawford’s current office is located at 1115 S. Main.

IF: Gathering Coming to Fort Scott Feb. 9 and 10

IF we believe God is who He says He is, why don’t we act like it?  Why don’t we share His love?  Why do we feel awkward inviting someone to church?

IF: Gathering is a gathering of about 3,000 women in Austin, Texas, which is simulcast to a few thousand places around the world, including Fort Scott.  Some are large gatherings in churches or theaters.   Some are small gatherings in people’s homes.  Some are women at home with their kiddos watching whatever moments they can squeeze in.   The goal is to point women to Jesus and the local church as the place to continue their faith journey.

In 2017, IF: Fort Scott included women from eleven area churches.

Register online now (see link below) to join us on February 9 and 10.  We will meet at Community Christian Church on February 9 at 6:30 p.m. to watch the first session and meet our conversation groups.  New this year—Saturday’s sessions will take place in individual homes for a more intimate setting. Registration is requested by January 31.

Questions?  Please call Jennifer or Marcy at 620.223.1500  or email

We want to give God away in the very places He’s put us, so we’re going to gather for the purpose of remembering why following God and making disciples matters.  We all get tired, we all wonder if what we’re doing matters, so IF: Gathering 2018 will be the reminder–it will be the celebration.  The work we’re doing to share the Gospel on the earth is worth it and God DOES move through the little things that nobody sees.  Join us.

IF: Fort Scott

February 9 & 10

Registration and details at 

Suggested donation $25

Action Behind the Scenes Downtown

Papa Don’s Restaurant Manager Brita Rygmyr shares a light moment with attendees of the Quarterly Downtown Meet and Greet Tuesday morning at the restaurant. In her comments, he said the restaurant has a special event room for rent with or without catering by the restaurant. In the background is Dav Mohler, office manager of Fort Scott Family Dental.

People with an interest in Fort Scott’s downtown area met at Papa Don’s Restaurant Tuesday morning to share news.

Here is a list of shared comments:

  • Holly Baker, Fort Scott National Historic Site Chief of Interpretation and Resource Management, will be leaving Fort Scott at the end of January for a position in Washington D.C.
  • Baker also announced a youth art exhibit will be displayed in February and March at FSNHS, and also shared the fort now has a mobile app for viewing the grounds with extra background history.
  • Bids and Dibs Consignment shop is seeking a place to give overstock items. “Anyone want to start a thrift store?” owner Angie Simon asked the group.
  • City Manager Dave Martin said the city is looking at ways to reduce tax amounts, indicating a visioning committee is looking at the issue.
  • Fort Scott Community Development Director Rhonda Dunn said one of her goals is to make Fort Scott a Christmas light viewing destination in the area. She stated she is soliciting unwanted Christmas lights and decorations for the project.
  • Fort Scott Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lindsay Madison announced the winners of the toy soldier decorating contest: Elaine Buerge, Deb Anderson, and Stacia Weilert. She said the downtown shopping brochure will arrive next week. There are leftover small business cloth shopping bags and doormats to give away, she said.
  • A Shiney Foundation representative announced there will be a feature film documentary 7 p.m. Jan. 20 at Memorial Hall, with a dance party following.
    The film is  FREE to the community.If the person would like to attend with a VIP package ( light meal, drinks, film and post party)  it is a 35$ ticket donation.
  • The Beaux Arts Center now is a Common Consumption Center, owner Denise Duncan announced.
  • A Craw-Kan Telephone Cooperative representative said broadband services will be offered soon to businesses in Fort Scott, then to residents.
  • Dave Mohler, office manager of Fort Scott Family Dental, said the renovation of the building at 2 N. Main has uncovered some old stain glass windows hidden in the walls.
  • Owner Angela Simons said Bids and Dibs is undergoing a restructuring inside and a new security system installed. The business has over 1,200 consigners that contribute items she said.
  •  Fort Scott Economic Development Director Rachel Pruitt said this weekend a basketball tournament will be at the middle school, Buck Run Community Center and the high school.
Attendees of the Fort Scott Chamber of Commerce sponsored Downtown Quarterly Meet and Greet listen as each attendee was given the opportunity to speak about the entity they represent.

The Prairie Troubadour Tickets On Sale Now

 Early Bird Pricing On The Prairie Troubadour Ends January 15

Friends of the Troubadour,

One month from today on February 9, the Liberty Theatre in Fort Scott, KS will come alive once again with the joyful bustle of Catholic conviviality as discussion continues on the good life.  The line-up to date: Bishop James Conley, Fr. Paul Check, Chris Check, Joseph Pearce, John Cuddeback, William Fahey and the inimitable Kevin O’Brien leading a conversation centered on Field and Family: Reflections on a Healthy Human Ecology.

Tickets are going fast this year so book your tickets before the early bird pricing ends on January 15 to secure your best rate and guarantee a spot.

Cold Or Flu?

Cold vs. Flu

Can you tell the difference?

 A runny nose. Muscle aches. Fever. Is it a cold or the flu?

Dr. Katrina Burke, family medicine physician at Mercy Clinic Fort Scott offers these tips to help you distinguish the difference between a cold and the flu.

Flu is usually a sudden onset,” Burke explains. “Headaches, muscle aches, tiredness/weakness and exhaustion are common and often severe with the flu.”

A fever is possible with both colds and the flu, but a temperature of 102 or above in children and adults that last 3 to 4 days is common with the flu,” she adds.

A cold typically worsens over a day or two. Adults seldom have a fever with a cold. Infants and young children may have a fever with a cold but the fever usually subsides within a couple days.”

The best way to prevent the flu is good hand hygiene and getting the flu vaccine. If you become sick, stay at home, use over-the-counter medication for a fever and drink lots of water.

If you have questions visit your Mercy provider or Mercy Convenient Care located at 1624 S. National in Fort Scott.


Obituary For Debra Sue Lowry

Debra Sue Lowry, 62 went to be with the Lord on January 7, 2018. She was born May 20, 1955, in El Dorado, Kansas, the daughter of Patricia Ann (Long) Johnson and Harold ‘Smoky’ Long.
Debra married Donald E. Lowry on April 15, 1976; they later divorced.
Debra was a long time resident of Fort Scott, Kansas. She managed several restaurants in her lifetime including the Flamingo Café, the Colonial Restaurant, and the White Grill Restaurant.
In her earlier years Debra enjoyed drawing, cooking, swimming, and family gatherings and playing cards with friends and family as well as playing bingo. In her later years, she enjoyed the simple pleasures of having coffee with friends and spending time with family and living a quiet life.
Debra is survived by her mother and stepfather, Patricia and Kenneth Johnson of Fort Scott; three sisters, Teresa Stewart and husband, John of Moran, Ks., Tamaca Houk and partner, Clay Price of Bronson, Ks., Alisha Raines of Fort Scott, two brothers, Harold Long and wife Susie of Taylor, Mo., and Tommy Tucker of Fort Scott. Four children; Darrick A. Lowry of Nevada, Mo., Donna M. Lowry of Fort Scott, Darren E. Lowry and wife Penny of Nevada, Mo. and Denise Alfaro and husband Walter of San Antonio, Tx. She is also survived by 19 nieces and nephews, 22 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren and many others who love her.
Debra was preceded in death by a brother, ‘Baby’ Long, her father, Harold ‘Smoky’ Long, a sister, Donna Kay Long, her maternal grandparents, Clayton and Leona Day, her paternal grandparents, Winnie and John Long, the love of her life, Donald E. ‘Donnie’ Lowry and many aunts, uncles and cousins.
Debra will be missed deeply by all who knew her. Our loss is surely heaven’s gain.
Cremation was handled by the Cheney Witt Chapel, 201 S. Main St., Fort Scott, KS.

FSHS Thespians Attend State Festival, Earn Honors

Submitted by Angie Bin

The Fort Scott High School Thespian Troupe #7365 gleaned several honors from the annual KS State Thespian Festival January 4-6, at the Century II Center in Wichita.

Twenty-six students attended with Thespian Director Angie Bin and sponsor Mark Bergmann. In addition, six Fort Scott Middle School Drama Club members attended on January 6, with sponsor Mary Jo Harper.

The troupe earned the highest honor awarded to Thespians in Kansas, the Gold Honor Troupe Award. To achieve this, troupe Historian Karina Kantilal, a junior, presented a notebook documenting the group’s productions, community involvement, and activities. The FSHS troupe also received a plaque for its 10-year anniversary as a troupe.

State Board Representatives senior Xavier Watkins and junior Hunter Adamson helped organize and lead the festival. Adamson received the honor of being elected by KS Thespian Directors to serve as one of five State Board Officers for the coming year.

“Getting the opportunity to hold the position of State Thespian Officer is such an honor,” Adamson said. “In the year to come, I hope to advocate for the importance of theatre for young people and bring about an awareness of the strength of the theatre department.”

As part of Adamson’s duties, she will attend leadership classes at the International Thespian Festival in Lincoln, Neb., in June and meet with the other officers throughout the year. She will then lead all state board representatives from Kansas schools to plan next year’s festival and will be in charge of the 2019 Festival.

Over the three-day festival, students also attended workshops and classes covering all aspects of theatre including acting, dance, technical theatre, theatre advocacy, stage combat and other related topics. Bin taught a workshop entitled “Let’s Play! Growing Theatre Kids,” using her research on children’s theatre to teach other schools how to cultivate a love for theatre among younger children in their communities.

Junior Darrick Green said, “I attended the Musical Theatre Stars dance workshop. It really showed me how profound these Broadway stars really are, how hard they have to work, how difficult choreography is and how much effort actually has to be released to achieve greatness.”

Students also watched productions of the top musicals and plays in the state, chosen to perform at the festival.

Junior Alyx Brooks remarked, “As usual, all of the workshops and plays were wonderful, however, one of my favorite workshops was a lighting workshop that helped me understand the different energies of lighting.”

Many students competed in individual events including sophomore Mesa Jones, junior Mary Gladbach, and senior Grant Coffman in Musical Solo; juniors Daniela Belcuore and Brooklyn Lyons in Musical Duet; and Brooks and Adamson in Duet Acting. The entire troupe competed in late night events including Improvised Acting, Speed Charades, and Creative Costuming.

The FSHS troupe plans to attend the International Thespian Festival at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, June 25-30. Members are working throughout the year to earn the approximately $750 registration fee to attend.

KState Extension: Regional Farmers’ Market Workshop Scheduled for Chanute

Submitted by Krista Harding

The interest in purchasing locally grown food is strong. Many consumers are looking to buy farm-fresh items that have been picked at the peak of ripeness, in most cases that very day! Have you ever thought about trying your hand at selling a product at a local farmers’ market? If so, you will want to plan to attend the regional farmers’ market workshop planned for our area.

The Kansas Department of Agriculture, K-State Research and Extension and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment are hosting a farmers’ market workshop set for February 10, in Chanute at the Mid-West Fertilizer Agronomy Center – 3030 S. Santa Fe.

The farmers’ markets are a great avenue for growers to market their products. The market allows growers to have face-to-face interaction with consumers. However, there are legal, safety and financial considerations that growers need to understand before choosing to sell at a farmers’ market. The regional workshop topics will cover topics that growers need to know about before selling.

Highlighted workshop topics include:

 Vendor Marketing and Communications

 Growing in High Tunnels 101

 Regulations on Selling Meat, Eggs and Poultry

 Sales Tax for Vendors

KDA’s Division of Weights and Measures will also offer free scale certification at the workshop for attendees.

Registration for the workshop is now open and is $20 per participant. Registration includes lunch; however, lunch will only be guaranteed to those participants who register by February 1. Registration forms can be found at or at any of the Southwind Extension District office locations in Erie, Fort Scott and Iola.

Onsite registration will open at 8:30 a.m. and the workshops will begin at 9 p.m. and conclude by 3 p.m.

In addition to this workshop, local growers are encouraged to attend the 2018 From the Land of Kansas Annual Meeting and Farmers’ Market Conference on March 1 and 2, in Manhattan. Registration is open at and will close February 19.

Krista Harding is a K-State Research and Extension Agricultural agent assigned to Southwind District. She may be reached at or 620-244-3826.