Sam was born and raised in South Bend, IN. He graduated from Riley High School in 1989. He went to Harding University where he received a B.S. in Biblical Studies graduating in December 1993. While an undergraduate he married the beautiful Kelly Manley (Valedictorian of her class and Missouri State Free Throw Champion – you got a love a woman who doesn’t mind marrying beneath her!) from St. Louis, MO (about this time is when Sam’s grades improved). Sam completed a M.Div. from Abilene Christian University in December 1996 and began his work at the Donmoyer Church of Christ (now Living Stones Church) in January 1997. He has three children – Isaac Samuel (13), Caleb Nathanael (10), and Alexandria Hope (8). In addition to ministry, Sam has experience in stocking shelves at Martin’s Supermarket, pouring concrete with the Papczynski brothers (think mean and tough ex-Marine sergeants), and working at a BBQ restaurant. He did spend one week working at Wendy’s fast food – but he can’t talk about it.
Likes: Cheese – that’s right – I’m talking kidney stone amounts of cheese, Bruno’s Pizza, Chinese food (especially those crab ragoon thingies and General Tso’s chicken), good Mexican food, hammocks, Disney World, Notre Dame Football, a King-sized pillow-top mattress, watching my children really belly laugh, getting my back scratched (this is a hint to my wife) a good thunderstorm, and Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Dislikes: Raw tomatoes, unless in Salsa (I have tried many times to like them but I just can’t), very slow drivers, passive-aggressive behavior, the sound of someone clipping their finger (toe) nails during a sermon, and cancer..
Favorite Movies: Braveheart (the greatest movie ever!), Gladiator, Dead Poet’s Society, A Few Good Men, and Pride & Prejudice – the long BBC version not the wimpy 2005 release – (please don’t tell my guy friends I like Jane Austin – I wonder if I had lived during her time if she would have found me to be “quite agreeable”).
Favorite Music Genre: Music from the 80’s, one-hit-wonders, Contemporary Worship, classical, anything with bagpipes, and recently I’ve started to get into a Latino sound (it makes me feel relaxed for some reason).
Favorite Author(s): Richard Foster, Dallas Willard, N.T. Wright, and Eugene Peterson
Hobbies: Reading, going to movies with my wife, cruising, and eating.
Favorite Pizza Topping(s): at the moment my favorite is simply cheese & extra cheese, thin crust from Bruno’s – but I can eat just about any topping (hold the anchovies)
Coke or Pepsi?: Coke Zero is the greatest beverage invention ever!