Ronnie Floyd reflects on 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor attack

 
Today, Dec. 7, the United States commemorates the 75th anniversary of the surprise attack on our forces at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, by the Imperial Japanese Navy. That attack killed 2,403 Americans and wounded 1,178 others—and was the direct cause of our nation entering into World War II. It was, according to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, “a date which will live in infamy.” This past June, I presided over the Southern Baptist Convention as president. In this setting in St. ...

MIA for 65 years, Korea veteran draws Mass. pastor’s gratitude

 
The return of a Korean War veteran’s remains to his hometown of Cambridge, Mass., 65 years after his death in 1951 provided opportunity for local Korean Christians to pay tribute and for Pastor Paul Kim to offer a public Gospel witness. U.S. Army Cpl. Ronald Sparks, then 20, was wounded in action and captured by Chinese troops the year after he arrived in Korea to help defend it against a communist advance. Shortly thereafter, his family received notice he was ...

At 'Hanoi Hilton,' Navy captain was POWs' de facto chaplain

 
Dorothy McDaniel knew all about Navy life. The hardships. The sacrifices. The loneliness. The pride a family has for their family member's service. So the day in 1967 a shiny black car pulled into her Norfolk, Va., driveway and two uniformed officers emerged, she knew. "Red is down," one of the officers said. Her husband, Navy Capt. Eugene "Red" McDaniel, was beginning six years of imprisonment in North Vietnam as a POW—and de facto chaplain at the infamous "Hanoi ...

Combat veteran & wife: from PTSD toward healing and hope

 
"Do you feel safe in our home?" Kathy Langston asked her husband, Navy Chaplain Mike Langston. "No, I don't," he replied. It was four years after his last tour of duty. Theirs was a family that understood deployment. Mike had been gone a total of nine and a half years during the course of their marriage. But they weren't ready for this; the "best friend" relationship that had defined their marriage had become a distant memory replaced by tension and ...

BCF hosts Army chaplains’ ‘Spiritual Resiliency Training’

 
For many years, The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) in Graceville has been identified as a “military friendly school” by G.I. Jobs. Recently, members of the BCF family were able to express their support and appreciation for the Armed Forces when chaplains and chaplain assistants serving in the United States Army held their annual training conference on the BCF campus. The one-day Army Chaplains and Chaplain Assistants Conference focused on “Spiritual Resiliency Training: Care for the ...

Baptist leaders decry transgender troop ban repeal

 
The Obama administration's decision to allow openly transgender people to serve in the U.S. military has been classified by Southern Baptist leaders with military ties as "deluded," "disastrous" and a step toward self-inflicted "national weakness." Military chaplains endorsed by the North American Mission Board, along with other Christian chaplains, appear to be "in the crosshairs of this new policy," NAMB executive director of chaplaincy Douglas Carver told Baptist Press, noting religious liberty concerns. The new policy was announced June 30 ...

Memorial Day: Jimmy Connelly's greatest honor

 
An estimated 3.6 million Americans fought in the Pacific Theatre in World War II, overcoming brutal encounters on island after island against Japanese soldiers burrowed into the hillsides. The late Jimmy Connelly was one of those Americans. The Navy made Connelly chief of a troop-landing Higgins Craft during the massive amphibious assaults at the outset of the Allies' first major Pacific offensive against the Japanese—Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands. Each craft could ferry up to 36 Marines, and when they ...

Evangelicals critique female military draft proposal

 
The House Armed Services Committee's recommendation that women be required to register for the draft has provoked reactions from an array of evangelicals, including Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary First Lady Dorothy Patterson and Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President R. Albert Mohler Jr. Though mandatory female registration for the Selective Service is still a long way from becoming law, the House committee's 32-30 approval of the idea April 27 led Patterson to note military service for wives and mothers "has never been ...

Women in combat: U.S. Department of Defense change sparks debate

 
The U.S. Department of Defense’s decision to open all military combat positions to women has rekindled a theological and practical debate on the role of women in battle. "It is no shock that a secular society that has embraced feminism and transgender ideology is now confused about gender roles and war," Owen Strachan, president of the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, told Baptist Press. "Men have no idea who they are today. Their grandfathers bled out ...

Marine’s faith endured during Iwo Jima beach landing

 
Horace Lee was 12 when he gave his heart to the Lord at a Baptist church in Alabama, 17 when he entered the Marine Corps in 1940, and 21 when he was wounded in Iwo Jima as the United States wrested the strategic island from Japan. "God taught me a great deal" in the military, said Lee, now 91. "The Marine Corps complemented God's work by their fellowship … because it's teamwork and fellowship, and if you don't have that then you cannot depend on ...

Hiroshima & Nagasaki remembered by Baptists

 
Following atomic bombings that leveled the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 70 years ago this month, Southern Baptists found themselves thinking about just warfare, possible nuclear annihilation and the providence of God. But a longtime missionary to Japan says they missed an evangelistic opportunity. "We have all heard stories of the great open doors for the Gospel of Jesus Christ in certain lands," wrote W.H. (Dub) Jackson, a longtime pastor, evangelist and missionary in Japan, "but whatever we have ...

Christians share Memorial Day thoughts

 
For many Americans, Memorial Day is simply an extra day of rest. But for millions of others, it's a day of memories and reflections on the friends and family who sacrificed everything in the defense of freedom. These are three stories of ordinary Christians—in their own words—who have faced extraordinary situations and still celebrate the hope that is found in Christ in times of crisis and loss. Chaplain (Major General) Doug Carver "For the most part, ...