BIMI

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Volume 14, Issue 2 SUMMER 2014 Change Of Leadership In the 1960s  a unique ministry regarding missions was born in the heart of Dr. James Kennard and other Christians serving in the US Military in Okinawa, Japan. With the Vietnam War in full swing there were over 100,000 military personnel and their dependents on the island of Okinawa.  Now the need for missionaries to the US Military serving in foreign lands was brought to the forefront. The vision for taking the Gospel to Americans serving, living, and working in foreign  lands began to grow in the hearts and minds of missionaries.   Dr. Kennard began his foreign missionary service in 1961 with Baptist International Missions, Inc.,  as a missionary to the island of Okinawa, Japan. Dr. Kennard and his wife spent 17 years as missionaries on the island of Dr. James Kennard Dr. Jeff Alverson Okinawa. After seeing and hearing the need for an English-speaking, home-style church off base for our US Military,  Dr. Kennard notified BIMI of this great need. Bob Elezy responded to BIMI's plea and Maranatha Baptist Church was started in the home of Dr. and Mrs. Kennard. Following Bob Elezy's successful ministry, Dr. Kennard pastored Maranatha Baptist Church for four fruitful years.   Dr. Jeff Alverson, Director/Editor Steve Nutt, Assistant Editor Dr. James Kennard, Military International Representative In 1980 Dr. Kennard became Director of Military Missions with BIMI. Under his untiring leadership, missions to the US Military began to grow and today they have started over 50 churches outside of military bases around the world and have 83 missionaries to the US Military serving worldwide. Military missions has been greatly blessed of God with thousands of souls being saved through these churches. Not only are souls being saved but also thousands have been call into full-time ministry as missionaries, pastors, and evangelists. These missionaries and churches to the U.S. Military have constantly fed new missionaries on to the mission field.  After 34 years of dedicated  service, Dr. Kennard will become the Military International Representative. His service for these 34 years has been very fruitful and Christ-honoring. June 1, 2014, Dr. Jeff Alverson was promoted to Director of Military Missions. Dr. Alverson served as a mis- sionary in Germany as pastor of Grace Baptist Church until Hahn Air Base closed. In 1993 Dr. Alverson became Coordinator for Military Missions, and in 1997 he was promoted to Assistant Director of Military Missions. During these 21 years of assisting in Military Missions, Dr. Alverson labors have been exceptional and his testimony above reproach. During his time as Assistant to Dr. Kennard, he preached many missions conferences and raised millions of dollars for Faith Promise Missions. Dr. Alverson is very excited about the opportunities before him, and he has set goals in his desire to move Military Missions forward in this time of great spiritual need.  Please pray for Dr. Alverson and Dr. Kennard as they assume new leadership rolls in Military Missions.