BIMI serves our military communities
In 1968, at the height of the Vietnam War, there were thousands of Americans stationed on the
island of Okinawa. There were obviously no English speaking Bible-believing churches on the island.
When a number of these military families began to inquire about worship services in English, James
Kennard, a missionary ministering to the Okinawan nationals, realized that a church was needed to
minister to the American military. So in September of 1968 the Maranatha Baptist Church was begun
under the leadership of missionary Bob Elzey.
Almost immediately God began to call men from the congregation into full-time Christian service
with a burden to minister to the military in other places. Some went to mainland Japan, some to
Germany, others to the Philippines, some to Puerto Rico and Panama. Others were called to go to
Italy, England, the Azores and Spain. There are now over 350 former members out of Maranatha that
are in full-time ministry. To God be the glory!
The newest BIMI Military work is in Bamberg, Germany, which was started in September 2008.
BIMI next plans to move into Constanza, Romania, where a new American base has recently opened.
There is a great need for new and younger military missionaries. For someone
who is considering missions, we highly recommend ministering to our men
and women who wear our nation's uniform.
BIMI strives to EVANGELIZE military communities utilizing gospel literature and visitation
ministries, ESTABLISH local churches, EQUIP servicemen and women through church training
and biblical discipleship that provides them with strong foundations in the Lord and His Word,
ENRICH the lives of military personnel through Bible-centered programs and ENCOURAGE GI's
who struggle with loneliness by offering them an environment of Christian fellowship and love.
The United States is committed to improving the quality of military life in order to fill its ranks.
The government has built everything from recreation facilities to theaters and from golf courses to
nightclubs in an effort to meet the physical and social needs of our troops. But the greatest need is
neglected—to introduce the service person to the source and essence of life, Jesus Christ. Without
a personal relationship with Christ, everything else in life, no matter how satisfying it may seem,
leaves one without hope.
Perhaps no segment of America is so forgotten or unattended in their spiritual needs as our service
personnel. Many Christians have assumed that the military person is being reached adequately
by present methods. Such is not the case. Thousands have never been touched with a simple
presentation of the Gospel, though they have served lengthy careers in the Armed Forces. Scattered