Tag Archives: chaplaincy

Retired Police Chaplain Looks into Rearview Mirror, Sees Ripe Mission Field Ahead

By Carl Stagner

John Crose is the son of influential Church of God missions figures, Lester and Ruthe Crose. With a name like Crose, you might assume he’d follow in his family’s footsteps abroad. God did call John to the mission field, but of a different kind. For twenty-one years, John Crose took the hope and healing of the gospel into all the world of police chaplaincy. His new book, The Exciting World of a Police Chaplain, chronicles firsthand accounts of ride-alongs with law enforcement, difficult death notifications, pastoral counseling, and sharing the gospel with unbelieving officers, family members, and persons affected by police-related matters. Though retired today, his experiences of the past predict an ever-increasing need for police chaplains. Continue reading

Navy Chaplain: Don’t Just Thank Me for My Service

Chaplain Travis Coffey

By Carl Stagner

November is known for Thanksgiving. It’s also known for Veterans Day. This is the time of year that people count their blessings and name them one by one; certainly, we consider our men and women in uniform a tremendous blessing. But according to one Church of God chaplain to the U.S. Navy, being thankful isn’t enough. It’s great, but it stops short of what they need most. Travis Coffey gives us a glimpse of life as a Navy chaplain, how the Lord is working in the midst of his ministry, and how the Movement can best demonstrate true gratitude for those who serve God and country. Continue reading

Pastor Engages the Enemy in Adventure of a Lifetime

Chaplain Miller prays with a Marine Corps Special Operations Team prior to a mission in East Africa.

By Carl Stagner

Calculated risk. Often used in the financial sense, Baron Miller uttered the term in the context of fear. Every time you take a drive in the car or catch a flight on an airplane, is there a chance you might not make it back? Sure, there is. But that doesn’t cancel your travel plans. When firefighters have to rush inside a burning building, or law enforcement are called to a chaotic scene, they don’t hesitate. There’s risk involved, but these community heroes trust their training and their gear to help them stand strong in the heat of the battle. The parallel to the Christian experience is inescapable; the soldier of the cross must engage the battle, must reclaim what hell has stolen. Might it get scary? Possibly. Could it get dangerous? Certainly. But at the fingertips of every believer is an arsenal of spiritual weapons and an array of training options to fully engage in the fight. Engaging the enemy—that’s what Baron Miller’s life has been about—from the halls of the Church of God he founded in Bellingham, Washington, to the shores of Guantanamo Bay. Continue reading

Church of God Corrections Chaplains Deliver Hope Behind Bars

prison_fence_stock_FORWEB

By Carl Stagner

They’re drug dealers. They embezzled funds. They’re kidnappers, rapists, and murderers. Upon re-entry into society, however, they’re also the ones some churches would rather not welcome into their congregation. But these men and women were created in the image of God. Family and friends have written them off, but God’s hand of unconditional love stretches out to them. Called beyond the familiarity of local church ministry, Church of God corrections chaplains are ordained ministers who have instead been led to “remember those in prison” (Heb 13:3), accept them, and share with them the hope of Jesus Christ. Continue reading

The Not-So-Glamorous, but Vital Ministry of Hospital Chaplaincy

hospital_stock_FORWEB

By Carl Stagner

Saying just the right thing to a mother whose child was just murdered. Maintaining peace between family members feuding over medical decisions. Sharing the hope of Christ with both dying and recovering patients. Hospital chaplain ministry may be more challenging than you can imagine. David Harness knows. He has served as a chaplain for seventeen years. Kristen Higgins has served as a hospital chaplain for more than nine years. Mark Eberly has served as a hospital chaplain for six years, following eleven years of pastorates at two Church of God congregations in western Pennsylvania. In the following interview with these three ordained Church of God chaplains, David, Kristen, and Mark offer valuable insights into the not-so-glamorous, but vital, ministry of hospital chaplaincy. Continue reading

Announcing Pastoral Care Week 2015: Spiritual Care Together

Pastoral_Care_week_logo_2015_FORWEB

By Xen Riggs

Did you know that we currently have more than two hundred Church of God ministers who serve as chaplains in hospitals, corrections facilities, businesses, on fire and police departments, in every branch of the military, and in VA hospitals? All are ordained and have devoted their lives to coming alongside individuals in deep crisis as ambassadors of Christ’s mercy, hope, and peace. From October 25 through October 31, spiritual care departments in a great variety of institutions will celebrate Pastoral Care Week. Continue reading

Honoring Our Chaplains, All Veterans This November

Veteran_morguefile_FORWEB

Photo: Veterans Day is November 11.

By Carl Stagner

How much do you know about our Church of God chaplains to the military, hospitals, and correctional facilities? David Erb knows a lot about them. He serves the Church of God as its chaplain endorser. As Veterans Day fast approaches, he urges the Church of God to remember not only our country’s men and women in uniform but also those who minister to them in the role of chaplain. Continue reading