Watchman Fellowship Ministry Updates
By James K. Walker
Please allow me to share some recent developments in our ministry.
1999 has seen a number of significant changes in the ministry of Watchman
Fellowship. Thus far we have had to say goodbye to a long-time friend,
staff member and board member, Craig Branch. We have also made some
important additions and expansion to our staff - including opening a new
office in California.
Craig Branch Resigns to Begin New Ministry
Our Alabama director and vice president, Craig Branch, resigned from
the staff of Watchman Fellowship at the end of last year to begin a new
ministry. Craig felt the Lord wanted him to establish a general apologetics
ministry with a more local flavor. His new ministry, Apologetics
Resource Center (ARC), focuses less on counter-cult issues and is centered
more on general apologetics issues and world religions. He plans
to work primarily with six local churches in the Birmingham area.
Craig invested over 15 years of dedicated service and ministry through
Watchman Fellowship. We certainly miss the knowledge, talent, and devotion
he brought to our fellowship. Our staff and board of directors wish
God's best for him and trust that his new ministry will strengthen the
cause of Christ.
Our Alabama office is now under the capable direction of Bob Waldrep
who continues to serve along with the rest of our Birmingham staff including:
Rob Bowman, Bonnie Bradford, Ron Carter, Freddy Edgerton, Clete Hux, and
Rob Bowman Joins Staff
Rob Bowman has recently joined our staff as publications editor. Rob
has earned a reputation throughout the evangelical apologetics community
for his commitment to scholarship, careful research, and quality writing.
I personally believe that Rob is one of the top Christian counter-cult
apologists in America today. I feel that he is superbly qualified
for this calling and I look forward to working with him. I believe
he will be an important part of our ministry's strategy and a valuable
addition to our team.
He has previously served as the Research editor and speaker for the
Christian Research Institute and as Director of Research at the Atlanta
Christian Apologetics Center. He has authored numerous books in the several
books including: Orthodoxy and Heresy: A Biblical Guide to Doctrinal
Discernment, Understanding Jehovah's Witnesses: Why They Read the Bible
the Way They Do, Why
You Should Believe in the Trinity: An Answer to Jehovah's Witnesses,
Witnesses, Jesus Christ, and the Gospel of John.
Mr. Bowman holds a B.A. from California State University and an M.A.
from Fuller Theological Seminary. He is a Ph.D. candidate at Westminster
TruthQuest Joins Watchman as New California Office
I am also pleased to announce that TruthQuest Institute has become part
of our team at Watchman Fellowship. TruthQuest is a well-respected
ministry with similar goals and objectives. This expansion gives us an
important West Coast presence and provides some top-notch, quality additions
to our research and writing staff.
The director of Watchman's Sacramento office is Everett Shropshire who
co-founded TruthQuest Institute and served as its president.
Everett is an ordained Southern Baptist minister and holds a BA in Political
Science from California State University, Long Beach, and an MA in theology
from Fuller Seminary. He has done post-graduate study at California State
University, Sacramento and National University. He currently is an adjunct
faculty member at Capital Bible College in Sacramento.
TruthQuest cofounder John Morehead is also now part of the Watchman
team. Mr. Morehead was a member of a Mormon sect, the Reorganized Church
of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS), for seven years.
John left the RLDS in 1983 as a result of reading works on Mormonism
by the late Walter Martin, and received Jesus Christ as his personal Lord
and Savior. He has studied cults, apologetics and comparative religions
for over 15 years.
He regularly writes, lectures, and is interviewed by the media on related
subjects. He has completed training and is certified as an Interfaith Witness
Associate with the Southern Baptist Home Mission Board.
Also joining the Watchman staff in our new California office is Dick
Baer, a former Mormon. Dick was born to a Mormon family, held the
Mormon Melchizedek priesthood, and participated in Mormon temple ceremonies.
After leaving the Mormon Church and becoming a Christian, he founded
Ex-Mormons and Christian Alliance (EMCA), an evangelical Christian ministry
reaching out to Mormons with the true gospel. EMCA recently merged with
Dick is considered to be one of the leading Christian authorities on
the Mormon faith. He began full-time Christian ministry in 1981 and has
given over 2,500 presentations in approximately 2,000 churches throughout
the US and internationally. He is a graduate of Brigham Young University
in Provo, Utah with a B.S. in sociology.
I thank the Lord for His continued blessings. Watchman Fellowship now
has offices in eight states. I have the privilege of working with a dedicated
staff of 25 men and women who are faithfully serving the Lord through this
ministry. If you want to know more about our staff, a more complete list
with further biographical information is available on this site at wfistaff.htm.
I also want to thank each of you, our readers whose continued prayer
and financial support make this ministry possible. As our ministry
grows and expands, your ongoing support becomes even more important to
the continued success of our evangelistic and apologetic efforts.
Your prayer support and financial investments provide spiritual and
economic sustenance to our work. More than that, it is also a tremendous
encouragement to each of our staff.
Would you please take a moment to jot us a note and let us know that
you are praying for us? It will mean so much to us to know that you
are part of our team.