Back to main magazine page now!!
Passing of a
Evangelist Dr. Bobby Brown took his first breath in heaven early
Sunday morning, September 24, 2018. This great servant of the Lord
will be greatly missed. He and his wife have touched many lives for
Christ, including the lives of many military people around the world.
Before Dr. Brown passed, he wrote an article for the GI BANNER,
“Remember, Reflect, and Rejoice.” We have included his article in this
GI BANNER. Thank you, Bobby and Gretchen Brown, for your great
sacrifice and service for our Lord. (Editor GI BANNER)
By Evangelist Bobby Brown
I am a Hoosier, born in Evansville, Indiana, January 1934. The Republic P–47
Thunderbolt aircraft was built in my hometown as was the Landing Ship
Transport at the shipyard on the Ohio River, which was located five miles
from my house. Camp Breckinridge, home of the 101st Airborne, located near
Morganfield, Kentucky, was less than an hour’s drive away. I grew up selling
the local newspaper on a street corner to soldiers and I have always loved our
military. Dr. Homer Britton preached several revivals in our church in Evansville
and became my friend. He told me about Tennessee Temple and suggested
I attend; I took his advice. Immediately after my high school graduation on
a Thursday evening in 1952, I jumped into the backseat of a 4-door Pontiac,
driven by Roy Richardson. I went to sleep and awoke the next morning in Chattanooga, Tennessee. That Friday was the last day
for Summer School registration at Tennessee Temple.
I soon discovered that Dr. Britton had a daughter, Gretchen. We met at Temple and two years later were married. Doctors
Lee Roberson and Homer Britton conducted the wedding
ceremony on August 28, 1954.
After college graduation, I continued in seminary, earning a
master’s degree in Religious Education. Gretchen taught piano,
conducted the Junior High Choir, and later conducted the
University Choir. I served in various locations as an assistant
pastor and music director for the next 13 years.
In 1966 while ministering in the Chicago area, I received a
call and request to speak to a group of people who had been
meeting for prayer in a home in the area. As a result of that
meeting, the Lord led us to organize the First Baptist Church
of Alsip, Illinois. Over the next 10 years, God blessed with a
Sunday school attendance of 250, a new church building, and
a congregation of believers who supported 41 missionaries
through Faith Promise. Through all of these rich experiences,
the Lord was preparing us for many more years of ministry.
Evangelism was the burning desire that had been on my heart since seminary graduation and when I shared this with Dr.
Roberson, he asked me to let him know when I made my decision. When I did make that call, he put a note in The Evangelist
about my availability. Between August and December of 1976, the Lord opened the door with invitations to 12 revival meetings.
For eight summers, we traveled as a family representing Tennessee Temple Schools. Because of this experience, Dr. James
Kennard asked if our family would go abroad and introduce Tennessee Temple Schools to the military churches and ministries.
We had a meeting with Dr. Roberson about this opportunity and he promptly stated, “It’s a great idea; let’s do it!”
Of all the things we have done together as a family, ministering overseas to our Armed Forces was one of our greatest blessings.
The men and women in our military are trained to take orders, which means they are good listeners. We sang, testified, preached,
prayed, and talked to them about their futures and introduced them to Tennessee Temple. We enjoyed telling them about Dr.
Roberson and the way God had used him to start the schools—College, Bible School, and Seminary. We told the soldiers of the
great crowds, of lives trusting Christ, and of those baptized in every service, and how God could use their lives in the same way.
We praise the Lord for the many who were saved and for those from our military who came to train at Temple and other great
Christian colleges. It is a blessing to know that many of those are now pastors, missionaries, and Christian workers, serving the
Lord around the world. Our first few trips representing Temple to the military led to many more such trips overseas to minister
to churches and military, both through revival
services and through conducting Family Bible
Schools. Our “Puppet Helpers” played a very
interesting part in our summer Family Bible
School Ministry. The helpers were Sergeant
Scott, Lazy Hound, Acts the Alligator, Carnal
Crow, and Cheerful Chick. We also had
Jonah’s Whale, Luke the Lion, Timothy the
Turtle, Faithful Frog, and Bessie the Cow.
Each had a special “voice” and “personality”
that helped us share the Gospel with both
children and adults.
Gretchen and I have many precious
memories of the past 35 years and of the
48 times we boarded airplanes on our
way to the military bases in Germany,
Holland, Belgium, France, Azores, Spain,
Italy, Okinawa, and Japan. We are truly
humbled to know that God could use us
for His kingdom in this way.
We thank the Lord for all of our men and
women who are serving in the defense
of our country to “Keep America Safe.”
Please continue to pray for our military
who represent our “Stars and Stripes”
daily. Thank God, for the vison He has
given BIMI to reach our Armed Forces
around the world with the Good News
of the Risen Savior. Pray for the BIMI
military churches around the world.
God bless THE BANNER. Do your
part to hold it high.
Only God knew that HIS love in the
heart of a boy selling newspapers on
a street corner in Evansville, Indiana,
would bring HIM glory and affect
lives for eternity.