There is a new shepherd leading the flock of Centralia’s Parkview Christian Church.
Justin Danielson, formerly of Louisville, Kentucky is that shepherd.
But this is not his first time in this particular pasture.
Besides spending some of his college here a few miles north by northwest of here reading books and playing ball at Moberly’s Central Christian College, Danielson spent a year as Parkview’s youth pastor.
Though born in Bloomfield Ia, Danielson, the son of a USDA meat packing inspector and a babysitting housewife , grew up calling the small north Missouri town of Milan his home.
Listening to him talk about his life, it is easy to believe that from an early age, Danielson’s life oriented on three pole stars, faith, family and basketball.
He grew up an Iowa Hawkeyes fan, Danielson said over lunch with 19 members of the Centralia Kiwanis Club.
But the basketball end of things really kicked in as an influence thanks to a fifth grade football coach in Branson, Danielson said. “He quoted the bible and he also quoted the greatest basketball coach in history, John Wooden: ‘Be more concerned with your character than with your reputation because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.’”
It made a deep and lasting impression on Danielson. “He showed us what it meant to be a guy with character and a guy above reproach.”
Eventually, he said football fell by the wayside, but basketball and faith stayed.
About that time, life started teaching him some of its harder lessons, he said.
“At 16 I saw loss,” Danielson said. “A close friend died in a DWI accident and I lost three grandparents that year as well… I kept asking why.”
For the full article, see next week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard