From the Sun-Sentinel Newspaper:
Prominent Boynton pastor dies after battle with cancer
Rev. Lance Chaney of St. John Missionary Baptist Church will be missed by the community
The Rev. Lance Chaney has left a legacy of service inBoynton Beach.
Chaney, 56, of St. John Missionary Baptist Church died Sunday after a battle with prostate cancer. City officials say Chaney was more than a pastor — he was a civic leader and anti-violence activist who had an uncanny ability to bring people together.
“If I could write 12 volumes, I couldn’t fit into it all in the impact that he’s had on the community,” said Vice Mayor Woodrow Hay. “He’s a great man who has had a tremendous impact on the city.”
Chaney has helped thousands of families by opening Daystar Academy of Excellence, a public elementary charter school, and Pathways to Prosperity, a non-profit rehabilitation center. He also hosted several back-to-school-drives, parenting seminars, health-care screenings and was known for giving out free bus passes and scholarships.
“He’d give you the shirt off your back,” Hay said. “He’s going to be greatly missed, I don’t question God, we all have a destiny, but I will say pastor Chaney will be greatly missed by this community.”
Hay, who has attended St. John Missionary Baptist Church since 1970, said Chaney will be remembered for his passionate sermons from the pulpit as well as his straight-talk from the dais.
Chaney served as a member of the city’s Community Redevelopment Agency board until 2007, he was diagnosed with cancer a year later.
Since Chaney came into the community 10 years ago from Illinois, city leaders say that Boynton is better for it.
Rae Whitely of Boynton United, an anti-violence organization, said the group, which had 7,000 community members march against violent crimes in April of last year, wouldn’t be where it is today without the help of Chaney.
“He definitely left his mark on the city,” Whitely said. “He had his hands in everything. He had a love for the community and a love for people.”
Chaney was also a mentor to other clergy in the area.
Pastor Nathaniel Robinson of the Greater St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal Church said that Chaney helped him and his congregation grow.
“The door was always open for me to talk to him,” Robinson said. “The community is really going to miss him, not just being a pastor — but his leadership.”
Chaney came to the city after a nationwide search to find the next pastor for St. John after the former pastor had a stroke. Chaney was installed as a pastor on the church’s 94th anniversary.