hughes_mark Pastor Mark Hughes
blog: Where Did These Bifocals and Gray Hairs Come From? 

My wife Shaylene and I grew up in Hannibal, Missouri—the boyhood home of Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), Colonel Potter on MASH, and Margaret Tobin (“The Unsinkable Molly Brown” of Titanic fame). We have two children, Rebecca and Isaiah, who are ten years apart. Our blood bleeds St. Louis Cardinals and KC Chiefs red. We love to root for the Redbirds and the Chiefs, although, after five years, the  Royals are beginning to grow on us a bit.

I graduated from Hannibal High School and attended Western Illinois University where I earned a Bachelor of Arts in History with a Minor in Political Science. I ended up two classes shy of having a Minor in American Literature. In 2007 I graduated from the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary (UDTS) with a Master of Divinity degree. In 2014 I graduated from UDTS with a Doctor of Ministry degree focused on congregational revitalization with an emphasis on Bible.

I am a second career pastor. Prior to enrolling in seminary I served in the United States Army as an enlisted soldier for three years. I then worked as a special agent for Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company for a brief time before working in store management for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. for a little over seven years. I first felt a calling on my life to pastoral ministry when I was fifteen years old at the New Wilmington Missionary Conference in Western Pennsylvania I ran from this calling for many years before the Lord compelled me to turn back from the life I was living to the life he intended for me.

While there are many exciting aspects of being an ordained pastor in Christ’s Church, what I treasure most is teaching, preaching, and pastoral care. I had a wise seminary professor who constantly reminded us, “We cannot love God deeply without knowing God deeply.” In Scripture we read that we are only able to love because God first loved us (1 John 4:19). The Bible is where we encounter God’s self-revelation to humanity in the person and Lordship of Jesus of Nazareth. In Jesus, God became fully human. He lived with us, walked among us, became intimate with our struggles and hurts, and ultimately laid down his life for us. The Apostle Paul writes that, “All Scripture is breathed out by God..” (2 Timothy 3:16). God reveals His will for creation not in the prevailing culture of the day, but in His Word. If you would ever like to visit about St. Luke JOY Church, the superiority of the Cardinals to any other baseball team, or perhaps muse about theology and deeper things in life I would love to sit down and have a cup of coffee with you. St. Luke JOY is a wonderful, loving, Jesus centered, multi-generational, evangelical, confessional community of Believers. This family of faith has deeply blessed my family’s life, and I would love for you to have that same experience.

If you are interested in my musings on the Faith of the Church and life in general, I blog at


Anna Scianna – Director of Youth and Family Ministry



I grew up in south Kansas City where I had the privilege of being raised in a wonderful Christian family and had positive experiences with the church from an early age. It was around middle school that I began to sense a call to full-time ministry, but I wasn’t sure what that meant at the time. I had a variety of life-shaping short-terms missions experiences in the years to come including time spent in Mexico, Guatemala, Zimbabwe and East Asia.

I am a proud Mizzou alum (go Tigers!) and received a Master of Divinity from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Mass. After seminary, I worked as a publicist for a Christian publishing company in Grand Rapids, Mich., for a couple of years before sensing God’s call to move overseas. I moved to China and taught at a university there for 2.5 years – which was a  challenging, but deeply rewarding time. Although I had long felt a pull toward the peoples of the world, over the years the Lord placed more and more of a burden on my heart for the local church in my home country, so I returned to the U.S. in the Spring of 2016.

Finding the position at St. Luke was nothing short of providential and I consider it a joy to get to know the youth and families here and hope that I can encourage them to fully embrace and understand the transformative power of God’s love and grace in their lives.

In my spare time, I enjoy cheering on Kansas City and Mizzou sports teams, reading, cooking, baking and trying new ethnic food, walking my dog, traveling, spending time with family & friends and meeting new people! While I’ve been blessed to travel a number of places and see beauty around this country and the world, I’m often reminded of the words from an old Third Day song – nothing compares to the greatness of knowing the Lord.


Ted & Julia Horowitz – Music Ministry

Linda Badgett – Office Administrator