First Baptist Church of Bossier City, Louisiana, Honors First Responders and Military Service Personnel In Special Sunday Service

First Baptist Church of Bossier City, La., hosted "Honor our Heroes Sunday," a special day devoted to ministering to and serving first responders and military servicemen in and around the city, Aug. 30.
First Baptist Church of Bossier City, La., hosted “Honor our Heroes Sunday,” a special day devoted to ministering to and serving first responders and military servicemen in and around the city, Aug. 30.

First Baptist Church of Bossier City, La., hosted “Honor our Heroes Sunday,” a special day devoted to doing just that: honoring the first responders and military service personnel in and around the city.

The church formally invited all police officers, fire fighters and paramedics from the city, as well as individuals in active military service, particularly those stationed at nearby Barksdale Air Force Base. Hundreds accepted the invitation, and roughly 5,000 people attended the church’s two worship services that day, which featured a Gospel presentation and a live interview with Taya Kyle, wife of “American Sniper” Chris Kyle, Aug. 30. By the end of the event, 53 people had prayed to receive Christ.

Senior pastor Brad Jurkovich, who completed his doctor of ministry at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in 2013, says the current cultural climate prompted the church to host the event. With nationally covered police shootings to the on-duty deaths of three Louisiana officers in the last month alone, Jurkovich saw the need to set aside a day to honor local first responders and military service personnel.

“We just wanted to be a blessing to them. That was our first goal,” he said. “Second, we wanted to share the Gospel with as many people as we could.”

The church offered two worship services instead of its usual one offered each Sunday. The church also held a free breakfast to those who attended the first service and a free lunch to those who attended the second.

“The expectation was that our church would really demonstrate the serving passion of Christ to others,” Jurkovich said. “You’ve got these military and first responders that, all the time, they’re serving,” and the church decided to say, “No, we want to serve you.”

Hundreds of service personnel and first responders attended the services, including the police chief, fire chief, and the new four-star general at Barksdale and his staff. The mayor of Bossier also attended, as did the mayor of Shreveport.

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SOURCE: Baptist Press
Alex Sibley

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