Kyle Patterson

Editor's Note

   Article originally published in May/June 2010 issue of THRiVE!      18th Century statesman and   philosopher Edmund Burke said, “The only thing necessary for evil to flourish is for good men to do nothing.” Found within this quote is the theme of this issue. Change begins with you and I. Mahatma Gandhi said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” There is a tendency within each of us to talk and dream of the change and impact we desire to have on the world - rather than being the answer to the problems confronting us. With change in mind, we present this issue in hopes of inspiring you to move from apathy to action.

On page 22 writer Nancy Carmichael examines the 21st Century epidemic of human trafficking: the underground industry that has enslaved millions worldwide including tens of thousands in the United States. Quoting Carmichael, “There are more human beings living in bondage today than in all 300 years of the African slave trade combined.  Unthinkable, but true.” The call to action for you is not to skim the article, look at the pictures and pass it by; rather get involved with STOP! an organization formed to combat this evil with real solutions, read the rest of the article to find out more.

Speaking of change, our cover story was originally with developer and governor hopeful Carl Paladino but was quickly changed after he came under fire for sending foul emails. None the less he is a man wanting to bring change so we published a revised article featuring Paladino and his mission for change. Paladino has demonstrated a genuine remorse for his emails and so we highlighted lessons learned, steps forward, and what we believe his future in politics will entail.

Lastly, Buffalo as a city is experiencing a demographic shift within our own population. Ryan Kozey on page 34 explores the increasing growth of refugees within our city limits and what you can do to serve them. Organizations like the International Institute, Jericho Road Ministries, Peace of the City, Journey’s End, Catholic Charities, and Jewish Family Services are helping but more is needed. According to Kozey’s research, “Throughout the year 2010, it is estimated that roughly 2,000 refugees will find a place to live in the city of Buffalo.”

So get involved, engage our culture and contribute to the story or Buffalo’s redemption. Go ahead and be inspired; read the articles and then pass them on to your friends and reflect together. Then come up with a plan and take action; take that small step of faith forward. You are needed in Buffalo and there is a place for you.

Kyle Patterson

{Please subscribe to read the rest of the issue}

Time with Robin Mols

Falls Tale by Robin MolsI recently had the opportunity to sit down with artist Robin Mols in his Eden haven. We published the article in the last issue but wanted you to read it online in case you missed the print version.

In the plains of Eden, New York lies the rustic haven of painter, sculptor and designer Robin Mols. Mols, 62, finds his fourteen acre lot of wooded beauty fitting to his fancy. His art evolves out of the diversity of the post modern world while fusing the two extreme ends of realism and abstraction. As Eden was the paradise of God, so Mols’s own arboreal enclave in Western New York has helped him discover a sense of the divine in his own backyard paradise.

Born in Rochester, New York,Mols was interested in art from a young age. The son of Dr. Robert W. Mols, a composer, gifted flutist and co-founder of the music department at the University of Buffalo, Mols grew up immersed in the sounds of chamber music, opera, jazz and big bands. He realized early on that the history of art and music are inter-related and proceeded to study art at New Paltz State College from 1965-67, followed by painting and graphics at the Pratt Institute. It was while studying in New York that Mols had an epiphany. “There is an image that is born in the process of painting which, regardless of the results, is a testament of the nature of man,” says Mols. His abstract works like “Heat” and “Falls Tale” reveal something Mols describes as a “voice within.” Hearing this “voice” happens at the moment when he discovers what image is being created, which Mols believes reveals the deep spiritual inspiration in his art. “In the search for Truth, we seek for that which calls to us from the mysterious unknown, to see, perhaps understand, but which pulls at us to discover what lies beneath the whiteness of beginnings. The journey is wrought with uncertainty and surely wrapped in chaos, but the end is a place of comfort to reflect and to review from the safety of hindsight.” Mols’s search for truth has led him to the Old Testament, to the Tabernacle of Moses. His lithograph painting, “Mosaic Tabernacle” depicts the Jewish worship center as described in the book of Exodus. Mols says this has become his best selling work, attracting a worldwide audience. The painting includes a full view of the outer court, the altar of sacrifice, the Holy Place,the Most Holy Place and the community of Israelites surrounding the Tabernacle.

Other spiritual realism works include the acute detail on the face of David in “5 Stones” based upon the Biblical account of David and Goliath, and his stunning portrayal of Moses journeying up Mount Sinai to commune with God. It is works like these that have earned him commissioned work at places of worship around the country, including The Tabernacle in Orchard Park, New York. Mols built his latest project, a new studio, to give him a refuge to harness his creativity and showcase his talent.

Mols’s other works include landscapes, lithographs and portraits which have been displayed locally at the Albright Knox in Buffalo, Erie Art Museum in Erie, Pennsylvania, the Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University and the Black Forest Gallery in Eden, New York, among many others. Prints of his work can be viewed and ordered online at

Carl Paladino for Governor?

Carl Paladion announces his bid for NY Governor. Photo by Matt BrownLast night Buffalo developer Carl Paladino stacked his claim on Albany- officially announcing his run for governor in front of a packed crowd at the Ellicott Square building in downtown Buffalo. Paladino, a registered Republican with conservative values is promising to "unhinge the Albany ruling class," reform the political system of New York, and correct the dynfunctional education system in places like Buffalo. His blunt message was met with cheers and chants from the crowd themed around anger towards the dysfunction in Albany. People cheered, "I am mad as hell and I am not going to take it anymore."

Paladino is hoping this momentum will carry him through until election time in November. His campaign is scheduled to travel throughout New York officially announcing to supporters and critics his bid for the governor's seat. Paladino committed to cut state spending by 10% - helping to reduce the gaping hole in NY's budget. Not seeking popularity or re-election, Paladino told me in an interview before the speech that after his four years are up, he will be done, and will spend time with his children, and grandchildren. He looks at his role similiar to when he served four years in the armed forces; Paladino described himself as a wartime guy, here to take out the bad guys, restructure the way Albany functions, stop driving away businesses from NY because of taxes and restructure the state. He is the type of guy that looks at how efficient our state operates and cuts off the fat.

No doubt a controversial figure, Paladino is direct, to the point and someone who wants to use his non-traditional style to get things done instead of play political games.

More coverage to come in our next issue. Look for it at the end of April.

March/April issue is here

THRiVE!'s March/April issue is here! THRiVE!'s new edition takes you up close with David Stapleton, the man who led the record breaking makeover in Buffalo last November. Plus we look at how you can help in Haiti, UB 2020, and more. Don't miss it. Here is a sneak peak at our cover.


Our new edition is out

Our March/April issue is off the press. We have an edition packed with some really great stuff including more content from last November's Extreme Makeover, an interview with UB President John Simpson, Statler Tower analysis and much more. It is exciting to see THRiVE! distributed at Wegmans, Barnes and Noble, 7-11 and Dash's Market. As usual copies are also at Bender's, Buffalo Christian Center and our partner locations.

I really would love your feedback and would love to have you subscribe for $19.95 a year. We have some great things planned for upcoming issues that you won't want to miss.

The Irony of The Chapel Controversy

Inside the Palace Theater, home of The Chapel at LockportIt seems ironic that there is controversy between the Catholic Church in Lockport and The Chapel at Crosspoint, considering they both are supposed to have the same mission. The Buffalo News published an article Sunday on their front page about the conflict the Catholic Church was having with a new church plant by The Chapel at Crosspoint. The Chapel is a non-denominational mega-church located in Getzville, NY. The Catholic Church historically has been the dominant faith in Western New York yet has been slowly declining in numbers with more and more of their parishes being forced to close. Maybe that is the reason why they are so upset about The Chapel's recent announcement that they will be planting a satellite campus starting Easter, April 4, 2010 in The Palace Theater and across the street in the Old Post Office in dowtown Lockport NY.

The Chapel views Lockport as a great opportunity to continue its mission of giving "every man, woman, and child repeated opportunities to both hear and see the gospel of Jesus Christ." The Catholic church according to an article published by the Buffalo News on Sunday sees the church plant as a threat. The Buffalo News published a copy of a church bulletin written by Rev. James A. Waite accussing the Chapel of slick marketing and live praise bands as a way of drawing in large crowds. 

The Chapel however have done their research on the opportunity that Lockport represents for church growth. According to a study Pastor Jerry Gillis presented at The Chapel at Crosspoint, Lockport has a population of 49,476 people of whom 70.4% of people have little to no faith involvement of any kind. With those types of statistics available the argument that the Catholic church is forming against the new work holds no influence.Yes there is a possibility that some members of the Catholic Church in Lockport would be drawn to their services and this could pose a threat. But if effective ministry was happening and the "market" so to speak was already "saturated" than why do 70.4% of the city of Lockport have no faith connection? That sounds like a great opportunity to reach a city that needs to hear and see what The Chapel has to offer.


Happy New Year! 2010

What an exciting year in Buffalo. Looking back there is so much progress in Buffalo to be proud of. I wanted to take just a minute to share with you a couple of the inspiring events of 2009 that THRiVE! was there to provide you with coverage of. First looking back we brought you exclusive coverage of two really important developments in the faith community. The launch of Restoration Church in our April edition, and the launch of NorthGate Christian Community in our August issue. These are two really important developments in Western New York. Both of these faith communities are making a positive difference in Buffalo. Both of them happen to be in the Amherst area, but what they are doing reaches beyond the town of Amherst. Restoration is involved in tutoring kids in the city, NorthGate is providing a relevant community to foreign exchange students who are here from as far as India without friends or family. Whether you agree with their faith stance or not, without these communities, these needs would not be met.

Next I think of the re-election of Mayor Byron Brown that THRiVE! was there to provide an exclusive interview with. You can read part of that interview here. Mayor Brown is a public servant who deserves to be honored whether we agree with every decision he makes or not. He needs our support and I want to encourage you to be the change you want to see in Western New York.

Next we were able to bring you the most complete and exclusive coverage of what has truly turned out to be a catalytic community restoration event in Buffalo: Extreme Makeover Home Edition. So many organizations came together to make it possible. We just were there to celebrate the work of so many and make sure that we all get to celebrate with them. You can view some of our photos here . Thank you to Matt Brown, THRiVE!'s photographer for really capturing the moment and documenting it for us to enjoy.

Lastly I wanted to mention the success of Avant, Buffalo's new multi-use high rise that Uniland constructing is just two years. You can view our article of this project in our DEC09/JAN10 edition.

Thanks and happy new year!

The Launch

While Buffalo’s West Side recently went through a huge makeover, conincidentally so did THRiVE! Magazine. Our new designer, Marinette Kozlow, along with the other members of THRiVE!’s team have worked together to bring you a magazine with a new look and feel just in time to cover the transformations in Buffalo, initiated by ABC’s Extreme Makeover:  Home Edition. In just seven days, Buffalo saw 50 home improvement projects completed, 85 tons of food donated to feed the city’s hungry, and so much more. The sound of Ty Pennington’s megaphone launched the people of WNY into action, and THRiVE! was there to capture it all.

Having secured exclusive one-on-one interviews with each member of the design team, the executive producer of the show, and local contributing leaders, THRiVE! devotes a large portion of this issue to the Makeover with more to come in the next. To view THRiVE!’s extensive photo coverage of the Makeover, become a fan of THRiVE! Magazine on Facebook or visit our website at

Another exciting development at THRiVE! is the official launch of THRiVE! Media Group, a division of our company that offers creative, quality services in print and online design, advertising, marketing, video, and photography. When the ABC production coordinator for Extreme Makeover asked if THRiVE! could find them a helicopter, we said, “Sure we can.” When ABC told THRiVE! they needed aerial footage for the show, we said, “We can do that.” And so, ironically, THRiVE! Media Group was launched in a helicopter. And now, we are ready to serve you like we did ABC.

I’d like to send out a special thanks to Extreme Makeover:  Home Edition for providing the people of WNY the opportunity to channel their hearts of service and generosity. Momentum on such a scale would have been very difficult to generate without their help. I would also like to specially thank my business partner and spouse, Julianna, who worked harder on this edition than any other I can remember.

“Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” Daily Update

  • On Wednesday, 14 employee volunteers from HDE Electric began installing 100 new exterior light fixtures on homes throughout the neighborhood, improving safety and security. 
  • Today, landscaping work begins and front porch railing and fence will be installed. Driveway will be completed.  
  • The Buffalo Jills will visit the site today to cheer on volunteers from 5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Spectators are welcome to view the build from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.  Visitors must register at the Colonel Ward Pumping Station at LaSalle Park and will be bused to the build sight.
  • The American Red Cross “Extreme Makeover:  Home Edition” blood drive will continue at School 77, 370 Normal Ave., from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • The Extreme Food Drive Challenge continues from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the International Preparatory School at 110 14th Street in Buffalo.  Donations of canned food are encouraged.

“Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” Update

Today's activities:

The Powell Home, 228 Massachusetts Avenue, Buffalo, NY  14213

  • The green deconstruction of the house was completed on Monday, and resulted in a 90% reuse/recycle rate.
  • Community revitalization and beautification projects began Monday and will continue throughout the week.
  • Today, basement walls will be placed in the early morning hours and the basement floor will be poured.
  • Framing will begin around 7 a.m.
  • Sabres alumni Rob Ray and Larry Playfair will be on hand to provide moral support at approximately noon. 
  • The Extreme Food Drive Challenge continues from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the International Preparatory School at 110 14th Street in Buffalo.  Donations of canned food are encouraged.

Extreme Makeover

Everybody is talking about it. Yes, Extreme Makeover Home Edition is coming to Buffalo. The home has been picked on the West Side of Buffalo but no one knows exactly where until this Saturday morning when the team of designers pulls up to the home of the family.

So many things are coming together in a way that is unique to even the producers of the show. I was at Rich Products the other day to hear from Conrad Ricketts, the Executive Producer of the show, Mayor Byron Brown, and David Stapleton of David Homes, the number one partner of the Buffalo Edition of Extreme Home Makeover. Stapleton told the crowd at Rich Products that people in Buffalo have been more supportive than any other show Extreme Makeover Home Edition has done. "We are going to try to show what Buffalo is about on a national scale. This is our opportunity to show how resilient WNY is," said Stapleton.

Conrad Ricketts encouraged the crowd, "You don't need us" referring to the fact that we as a community can continue this work after they leave. "This show is about the bar rasing in the 1900s, everybody comes together to change a families life and end up changing their own lives."

The bar has been raised for nearly 2500 people involved in volunteering, building, contracting, the works. Ricketts explained that the speed in which they complete this project is like a time warp. "Everyday is equivalent to a month, every hour is equivalent to a day." He explained that this is going to be their 165th time doing this and though they actually complete the project in 106 hours (less than the 7 days) not one time have they failed. With 150 people working on the house at any given time, day or night, this project is bringing the community together in other ways including a food and blood drive.

Exciting times. Get involved today!



Toronto and Back

We just got back from Queen Elizabeth Theater in Toronto. We made our first of hopefully many more trips to come to hear Rob Bell's, Drops Like Stars tour last night- September 16th.. We arrived to the almost full venue at quarter after 8- fashionably late I guess since traffic on the QEW was backed up for about a half hour. The crowd of mostly young, college age people was estimated at about 1,000. Rob spoke until about 9:45 about art, suffering, passion, and God. It was interesting and made you think about some things. We have an exclusive interview being posted to the site tomorrow. We were able to sit down backstage after the event and talk with Rob about the tour, his ministry, and what's next for him. Check back tomorrow for that.

Discipleship or Evangelist?

That is the question I have been pondering recently as I have looked at THRIVE! and what we can do to improve it. Our concept was that the word of the Lord would spread quickly throughout W.N.Y. but at the same time our goal is not to separate ourselves from society. So I am excited about what we are planning for our October 2009 edition. Also our August/September edition is out and at bookstores and churches near you. Talk to you soon.

Here we are

THRIVE! Magazine's eighth edition was just released a couple weeks ago with the best picture of the peace bridge's new lights I have seen to date, thanks to our new photography partners Make sure to contact them to check out the best architecture photography I have seen of Buffalo. The picture highlights what we at THRIVE! believe to be happening across Western New York in the faith community. Partnerships and bridge building is happening  to expand the kingdom of God in our region in a way that brings about restoration to the spirit, soul, and body of every person in Western New York. I wonder what that would look like. Poverty would be ended, joblessness would be eradicated. Sick bodies would be made well. Businesses would be prospering enough to give money away to begin new businesses. Crime in our schools would be non-existent. Drug addictions would be cured, alcoholism would end. Families would be re-united and healed. Divorce would be unheard of and the beauty of the Lord would be revealed to every eye under heaven. That is what we are going for and we will see the fullness of this happen when the Lord returns.

THRIVE! is now officially partnered with 20 churches in Buffalo for distribution as well as 5 key bookstores (Bender's, Buffalo Christian Center, Lighthouse Bookstore, and Life Resources) in the area who are offering THRIVE! on their magazine stands for $2.95. We are currently working with Tops, Borders, and Barnes and Noble to possibly begin offering the magazine at these locations as well, for sale that is. We have been giving so many copies away for the last two years but really a lot of sweat and work goes into producing this, plus a lot of money. So we are asking for as little as $3.00 to offset the costs a little bit. Is that really too much to ask?  

Send me your feedback and please if you are a journalist, web developer, artist, etc contact me personally about contributing to the cause of every person in Western New York.


Experiencing True Bethel

I had a great time writing an article about True Bethel Baptist church and their "Senior Servant" Darius Pridgen. Look for it in our June-July edition coming out June 14th. The name of True Bethel with the acquistion of 998 Broadway is changing to Experience and now I know why. The service was something to experience with the wide range of emotions and great preaching by Darius. Check it out by subscribing to THRIVE! today.


Finally our spring edition is here! It sure is a good feeling to have completed our 7th edition. There are so many great things going on right now in WNY, it is hard to fit everything in each edition! We so appreciate your support and feedback as we develope WNY's Premiere Christian Magazine. Special thanks to our church partners and advertisers who help make THRIVE! possible. If you are having trouble finding a copy or if you want to make sure you get your copy at your home, you can now subscribe to THRIVE! by clicking here and sending us your information via our website, then you can pay via paypal below or we can send you a bill. Thanks so much for your support. We hope you enjoy this new edition.


I don't know of a better word to describe this season of my life than transition. New job (THRIVE! is now full time), new church- my wife and children and I are helping with the Northgate Churchplant, new baby- well 6 months now. Everything is new and different, but really great overall. Just getting my head around all the changes is the difficult part.

Personally however, I love change. I get bored with the same old, same old. I like a new adventure, a new season. So here we are in the midst of this economic shaking and we can't get away from the thought that God is calling us to take this magazine full time. People have thought we are out of our minds to do it now. But if not now, when? I don't put my trust in the economic systems of this world we are putting our trust fully in the grace and peace of God.

It has honestly just been amazing for us to watch God meet us as we have stepped out with this. So many doors have opened for THRIVE! and we know this is just the beginning. We know we are starting small but we are excited about what the future holds. For the longest time we felt their was a ceiling on what we could do with this and still hold onto the security of my day job. It was as if Jesus was asking us to come and walk on the water with him, so we did. Talk to you soon.


Kyle Patterson, THRIVE! Magazine