I am thrilled and extremely thankful that God in His providence has opened the opportunity for me to become the PRCC’s Associate Director for Civilian Chaplaincy. It is a great honor and privilege to serve my fellow civilian chaplains and to assist as needed with serving our military chaplains. What follows is a brief recount of how the Lord has used me through the years – all to His glory!
I grew up in Little Rock, Arkansas but went away for college to Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. I received a B.A. degree in Journalism from LSU and following college went to work for Young Life in Kansas City, Missouri for a year before becoming the Area Director for Young Life in Odessa, Texas. I left West Texas for Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, Mississippi and received a Master of Divinity degree from RTS in 1985.
After seminary I taught Old Testament and New Testament at the Episcopal High School in Houston, Texas and was an assistant basketball coach. (The director of the Religion Department defended hiring a Presbyterian by saying he couldn’t find any Episcopalians qualified to teach the Bible, and the headmaster and Bishop accepted that explanation. And when you see me, you will know that being a basketball coach is also quite funny.) I then served as an assistant pastor at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Little Rock before becoming the solo pastor of a church in North Carolina. I have been a Teaching Elder in the PCA for 27 years.
My chaplaincy experience began nearly 22 years ago in September of 1991after our family (my wife Hazel and two children, son Loddrick and daughter Hannah) needed to return to Arkansas following the pastorate in North Carolina. I began as an on-call chaplain at Arkansas Children’s Hospital (ACH) in Little Rock. By the spring of 1992, two other chaplain positions became available to me, one as a fee-basis chaplain for the Central Arkansas Veterans Affairs Hospital System and the other as a hospice chaplain. I continued as a chaplain for all three until I became the Director of the Pastoral Care Department at ACH in May 1995. I have been the Director of Pastoral Care ever since – until now.
I have been involved in the national leadership of the Pediatric Chaplains Network (PCN) since 1998 and served as President from 2003-2005. I was the Project Coordinator for the PCN’s development of a national training curriculum specific to pediatric chaplaincy. The Pediatric Chaplains Institute (PCI) was founded in 2007 as a week-long intensive training using the new curriculum. I have served as the Dean of the PCI since its beginning.
I have been a member of the ACH Bioethics Advisory Committee for 18 years, and I received a Certificate in Clinical Bioethics in 2001 from the Medical College of Wisconsin. Last year I was elected the first non-physican co-chairman of the Bioethics Committee. I served on the faculty at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) in the Medical Humanities Department for 10 years assisting with teaching Medical Ethics to second year medical students. In 1998 I began ACH’s palliative care program (PalCare) and served as Director of PalCare until 2006 while continuing to be the Director of Pastoral Care.
And saving the best for last, I became a grandfather for the first time in October 2012. All praise and glory to our great Savior and King!