Monday, January 24, 2022

Wade Burleson's Article Archive from 2005 to 2022

The new website - IstoriaMinistries.com -  will open the first week of February 2022. 

Istoria will link to this old website on its archive page. Istoria Ministries will not remove posts on this old blogger site so as not to affect SEO ranking of the various articles. 

Feel free to use the "Google Search Bar." (on the left) to peruse this site. Type on this in a word, phrase, or biblical text, and articles relevant to your search (on this blog archive) will be shown. 

NEW Istoria Blog Articles by Wade Burleson will begin in February 2022 and will be posted on IstoriaMinistries.com. A NEW archive will be started at the new website for all articles written in 2022 and the years to follow.


Friday, December 31, 2021

"A Revolution that Began in the Hearts and Minds of the American People" - by President John Adams

John Adams, an American statesman, attorney, diplomat, writer, and Founding Father served as the second president of the United States, serving from 1797 to 1801. 
John Adams died on July 4, 1826, the same day his good friend Thomas Jefferson also died. 

Eight years before his death, John Adams wrote a personal reflection on the American Revolution

In his written analysis, Adams made an important observation on how the American Revolution began.

“But what do we mean by the American Revolution? Do we mean the American War? The Revolution was effected before the war was commenced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people, a change in the religious sentiments of their duties and obligations.”

Read again the last line of the quotation. John Adams states the American Revolution began “in the minds and hearts” of the American people through “a change in their religious sentiments.”

According to John Adams, this change began on January 30, 1750.

The Revolution of Hearts and Minds Begins


On that day, Jonathan Mayhew (b. 1720 – d. 1766), the pastor of West Church (Congregational) in Boston, Massachusetts, published a sermon he preached entitled “Discourse Concerning the Unlimited Submission and Non-Resistance to Higher Authorities.”

John Adams credits this sermon as the spark that lit the Revolutionary flame in the minds and hearts of the colonists. He said that this message was “read by everybody.”

There were two major points that Rev. Jonathan Mayhew made in his sermon:
1. First, in the introduction, Jonathan Mayhew traces the rise of oppressive and tyrannical governments from the days of Nebuchadnezzar in the book of Daniel (6th century BC) to the English monarchy in the mid-1700s. Mayhew then writes:

“There can be nothing great and good where tyranny’s influence reaches. For which reason it becomes every friend to truth and humankind; every lover of God and the Christian religion, to bear a part in opposing this hateful monster.”

In other words, according to Rev. Mayhew, it was the moral and religious duty for every lover of good and truth to oppose tyranny within one’s government.

2. Second, in the body of his message, Mayhew argued that mankind is bound to a Higher Law than that of government’s law. The American people, Mayhew said, are required to obey their government’s law only when it is in agreement with Higher Law. Indeed, Rev. Mayhew argued, if the government violates Higher Law, “we are bound to throw off our allegiance” and “to resist.”
But what was this Higher Law to which the American people were bound?

Richard Maybury, in the July 1987 edition of The Free Market, published by Ludwig von Misis Institute, summarizes this Higher Law with two principles:

    1. Do all you have agreed to do, and
    2. Do not encroach on other persons or their property.


These are the two common principles on which all major religions and philosophies agree.

Thus, this Higher Law is often called “Common Law.” Every political philosophy or religion may express these two principles differently, but they have a common belief in them.

Doing what you promise to do (Contractual Law) and not encroaching on other persons or their property (Common Law) is what brings about the Common Good.

The AIM of All Political Actions Is the Common Good


All political action aims at either conservation or change.

Conservatives and liberals all desire the common good. The conservative believes it is best to conserve the laws or institutions that are achieving the common good and the liberal believes in abolishing or removing the laws or institutions that are not achieving the common good.

That is why conservatism and liberalism are relative terms.

The American Revolutionaries were called liberals by the British Parliament. They wished to change the laws for the colonists’ common good. But today, Americans who desire to conserve the principles of our Founding Fathers are called conservatives.

One generation’s conservative is another generation’s liberal.

No American should fall into “party lines.” We all need a Revolution of the Higher Good in our hearts and minds.

Common law was the law to which the American colonists were dedicated, and it was the law that the politicians and bureaucrats were breaking. The government was encroaching, so the colonists overthrew their government. They committed treason.

This is what the American Revolution was all about – treason. And this treason was regarded as moral, ethical, and right in every way.

The great legal scholar Sir William Blackstone once wrote:

“This law of nature, being coeval with mankind and dictated by God himself, is of course superior in obligation to any other…no human laws are of any validity if contrary to this.”

The Americans were not fighting the British during the American Revolution. The Americans were British. But the British colonists (the Americans) had an awakening of the heart and mind to Higher Law, the basis of all human rights.

The pamphlets the colonists passed out were often subtitled “The Rights of Englishmen!” The colonists were enforcing this Higher Law. No king, no parliament, no governing body, is greater than the individual.

“All men are created equal,” wrote Thomas Jefferson.

Thus, the eternal and immutable Higher Law states that all governing authority has special rights or privileges and no governing authority may encroach on the property or persons of others.

The Reasons for the American Revolution  


In 18th century England, there existed unlimited government control and the taxation of everything and everybody. There were no free markets and no free enterprise. Unless a person had government ties, no person could “get ahead” in life.

Richard Maybury gives us the history of the Pine Tree Flag flown by American warships during the Revolution. He asks, “Why would the colonists put a pine tree on their battle flag?” Then he answers:

“The (British) government had enacted a regulation saying no colonist could cut down tall, straight trees; these trees were to be reserved for masts on Navy ships. This meant the best, most valuable trees on a person’s land had, in effect, been confiscated by the government.

When a government tree inspector would come through the forest to select and mark the best trees, colonists would follow him. These inspectors were highly trained experts, good at identifying the best trees for Navy ships – the Navy ships that were constantly pursuing smuggling ships.

When the government’s lumberjacks then came through the forest to collect the marked trees, they would find the trees had already been cut and sold – for use on the smuggling ships.

One of these ships was THE LIBERTY, owned by John Hancock. Hancock was a successful wine merchant known throughout the colonies as “The Prince of Smugglers.” His reputation eventually earned him the honor of being the first to sign the Declaration of Independence.

Unfortunately, as the story of the Pine Tree illustrates, America did not remain beyond the reach of government. As the colonists’ wealth increased, politicians began making more and more efforts to steal – “tax” – this wealth. More and more bureaucrats and troops were sent to the colonies to enforce laws and shut down down the underground economy.

The colonists’ reaction was dramatic. The infamous Stamp Tax, for instance, was greeted by armed rebellion; tax collectors were tarred and feathered, a procedure that usually resulted in death. When John Hancock was arrested, the people rioted and the government’s agents barely escaped with their lives.” (Richard Maybury, The Free Market, July 1987, published by Ludwig von Misis Institute).

May God enable a religious reformation in the hearts and minds of the American people. The Higher Good is found in the Common Law, principles coeval with man. It is the duty of all good and religious men and women to resist the laws of government that encroach on persons or their property and give rise to tyranny.

Wade Burleson

P.S - I continue to work toward the opening of a new website on 02.02.2022. Thank you for your patience.

Wednesday, December 01, 2021

Wade Burleson at Istoria Ministries Starting 2.2.22

I have been blessed to serve as the Lead Pastor of Emmanuel Enid for the past 30 years. 

On February 2, 2022, I will begin working full-time through Istoria Ministries, a 501(c)3 non-profit ministry organization that Rachelle and I founded ten years ago. 

Rachelle thought it a good idea to write this post to let everyone know our plans for the last quarter of our ministry.

Through Istoria, I will be writing, speaking, podcasting, leading tours, conducting pastor and marriage retreats, and other special ministries. I hope to inspire people to follow Jesus and be "salt and light" in our wounded and dark world. My focus during this time will be more prophetic than pastoral. 

Istoria is a Greek word that means "to ask or inquire." We get our English words story and history from its root. The source of all knowledge is asking questions.  The moment people are prevented from asking their questions or telling their stories, liberty is lost. 

Istoria's purpose is to pursue Life, Light, and Liberty. Istoria's mission is for people to know the story of Jesus Christ, the Source of real Life, true Light, and eternal Liberty, so that His Story becomes central to everyone's story.

At Istoria's new website beginning on 2.2.22, there will be three essential features: 

  • The archives of my writing ministry (thousands of blog articles on hundreds of subjects). 
  • The audio archives of my teaching (40 years of sermon series).
  •  New weekly content, both written blogs, and audible podcasts.
Rachelle will be the Director of Special Projects and help us get new books in the pipeline and coordinate travel and tours. Thanks to Lissa Roberson, Alice Isaac, Mary Burleson, and my wife Rachelle, three new books, Lord willing, will be available from Istoria Ministries in 2022.
  • Love Never Fails (A Study of I Corinthians 13)
  • The 12 Days of Christmas (An Illustrated Family Coffee Table Book)
  • The Good News According to Jonah (A Study of the Book of Jonah).
This post will be my last until the new Istoria website is launched on February 2, 2022. 

With the help of many friends who have volunteered their time, skills, and time, we will be opening Istoria's office building (801 S. Van Buren, Enid, Oklahoma 73703) in January 2022. That will give me 30 days to get the podcast studio and my office ready to go for 2.2.22.

Expenses are high. I have refrained from raising funds for Istoria Ministries while leading Emmanuel Enid. The time has come for me to request your help. 

My message of grace through Istoria Ministries is one I desire to be accessible to everyone. To operate Istoria's website, produce a weekly podcast, write my blog regularly, and have a home base from which we can minister, Istoria requires funding. 

A friend of Istoria Ministries has promised to match whatever contributions Istoria Ministries receives in December 2021, dollar for dollar. If you would like to contribute a tax-deductible donation to Istoria Ministries before the end of the year, go to www.istoriaministries.com and donate either via secure credit card or PayPal. Or, if you desire, you may send a check to:

Istoria Ministries
801 S. Van Buren
Enid, Oklahoma 73703

If you have a stock gift that you would like to give, Istoria Ministries has a brokerage account to receive your tax-deductible stock gift through Stride Bank or Edward Jones, whichever you'd prefer.  Details are located at www.istoriaministries.com.

Thank you for being a friend to Rachelle and me. Thank you for considering being a partner with Istoria. 

Until 2.2.22, may God's grace and mercy superabound to you and your family.

Wade Burleson, President
Rachelle Burleson, Special Projects

Saturday, November 27, 2021

2021 World's Tallest Live Christmas Tree, Enid, OK



Between 30,00 and 40,000 people gathered in the downtown square of Enid, Oklahoma, last night, Friday, November 26, for the lighting ceremonies of the world's tallest living Christmas Tree. The CHRIST TREE, as it is called, is 144-feet tall. This year's Rockefeller Center's Tree is 77-feet tall. Come to Enid from now until January 6, 2021, to enjoy the downtown festivities. We'll be hosting four Christmas Eve services at the Christ Tree on Friday, December 24, 2021, at 2:00, 4:00, 6:00, and 8:00 pm. 


Thursday, November 25, 2021

Be My Thou Thanksgiving Vision: A Prayer for All

BE THOU MY THANKSGIVING VISION

The Bible says, “In everything give thanks,”
but this seems difficult if we are frank.
In our lives, there is so much tension,
for it to happen, “Lord, Be Thou My Vision.”

Luther cried “this world with devils filled,”
a truth that seems to take away our will
of accepting this “giving thanks” mission.
So we ask, “Lord, Be Thou My Vision.”

When darkness hides Your smiling face.
Pressing on requires "Amazing Grace."
We cannot see good with any precision,
So we pray, “Lord, Be Thou My Vision.”

Your power and love to us please show,
and grant that we'll be able to know,
if we make this “giving thanks” decision
we'll experience “Lord, Be Thou My Vision.”

So we choose to give You thanks today,
and join with family and friends to say,
“We all trust Your grace and provision.
You, O LORD, are our Thanksgiving vision.”

- Wade Burleson


Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Chasa Boudin and San Francisco's Crime Wave

If you haven't seen the brazen crime wave video from November 22, 2021, of the extraordinary "smash and grab" heist at a high-end mall in San Francisco, you need to watch

It's sickening. 

When over 100 people coordinate with one another to rob a mall store in broad daylight, Americans who love their country must ask the question "How?" or "Why?" 

The answer is the same.

A Marxist named Chasa Boudin is the Chief Law Enforcement Officer for San Franciso. Wikipedia does a great job cataloging the radicalism of San Francisco's District Attorney Chasa Boudin. 

Boudin was born in New York City to Jewish parents. His parents, Kathy Boudin and David Gilbert, were Weather Underground members. When Boudin was 14 months old, both were arrested and convicted of murder for their role as getaway car drivers in the Brink's robbery of 1981 in Rockland County, New York. His mother was sentenced to 20 years to life and his father to 75 years to life for the felony murders of two police officers and a security guard.

After his parents were incarcerated, Boudin was raised in Chicago by adoptive parents Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, who, like his parents, had been members of the Weather Underground. Boudin reports that he did not learn to read until age 9. Kathy Boudin was released under parole supervision in 2003.

Boudin descends from a long left-wing lineage. His great-grand-uncle, Louis B. Boudin, was a Marxist theoretician and author of a two-volume history of the Supreme Court's influence on American government, and his grandfather Leonard Boudin was an attorney who represented controversial clients such as Fidel Castro and Paul Robeson. His uncle Michael Boudin is a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, and Michael Boudin's uncle Isidor Feinstein Stone was an independent journalist.

Boudin entered St Antony's College, Oxford, on a Rhodes Scholarship in 2003. At Oxford, he earned two master's degrees, one in forced migration and the other in public policy in Latin America. He earned his Juris Doctor from Yale Law School in 2011 and began work for the San Francisco Public Defender's Office as a post-doctoral fellow in 2012.

Before law school, Boudin traveled to Venezuela and served as a translator in the Venezuelan Presidential Palace during the administration of Hugo Chavez.

After law school, from 2011 to 2012, Boudin served as a law clerk to M. Margaret McKeown on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He was a 2012–2013 Liman Fellow at the San Francisco Public Defender's Office, and in 2013 and 2014, he served as a clerk to Charles Breyer on the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. In 2015, Boudin began working full-time at the San Francisco Public Defender's Office as a deputy public defender. While there, he argued on behalf of the office's clients that California's bail system is unconstitutional, leading to the published case In re Kenneth Humphrey, in which the state's First District Court of Appeals held that judges must give consideration to a defendant's ability to pay before setting bail.

Boudin also serves on the board of the Civil Rights Corps, a national non-profit organization, and is on the board of Restore Justice, a non-profit based in California.

Boudin translated Understanding the Bolivarian Revolution: by Hugo Chávez  He works with Marta Harnecker, translating into English, Letters from Young Activists: Today's Young Rebels Speak Out, Boudin co-wrote The Venezuelan Revolution: 100 Questions – 100 Answers. His latest book, Gringo: A Coming of Age in Latin America, was released in April 2009 by Charles Scribner's Sons.

The District Attorney in San Francisco is a communist. The American voters put him in office. It is time for Americans to stand up to tyranny, Critical Race Theory, and any political theory contrary to American values.

The communists are taking over the United States of America. 

It's time real Americans said, "Enough!"

Monday, November 22, 2021

Let's Be Thankful that "This Is My Father's World"

The Niagara Escarpment
American Presbyterian pastor Maltbie Babcock (1858–1901) loved the outdoors. He had been a champion baseball pitcher and accomplished swimmer at Syracuse University before entering the ministry. Pastoring the Presbyterian Church in Lockport, New York, Maltbie took walks to the top of the Niagara Escarpment almost every morning. The scenic views of Lake Ontario were incredible. Each time he left the house, he would tell his wife “I am going out to see my Father’s world."

On one of these walks, Maltbie was moved to write down poetic words about "my Father's world" and what the “rocks and trees, skies and seas" could teach of God's glory.

But here is the rest of the story...
Maltbie Babcock 

The poetic lyrics of "This Is My Father's World" are the only published poetry of Maltbie Babcock. He died by suicide at age 41 in Naples, Italy, on a return trip from his visit to the Holy Land. Maltie had come down with Brucellosis, a virulent disease, acquired from infected milk or meat. The disease can cause a person to enter maniacal fever accompanied by extreme depression. It is believed this disease led to Maltbie's suicide.

Babcock’s wife had his poetry published soon after. Then in 1915 a close friend of his, Franklin L. Sheppard, adapted to Babcock’s words a traditional English melody that he remembered from his childhood, and a remarkable hymn was born.

After almost two years of death by disease in America as well as polarizing political debates that sometimes strain familial relationships, let's pause this Thanksgiving 2021 and remember the glorious truth that "This Is My Father's World."
 
This is my Father's world
And to my listening ears
All nature sings, and round me rings
The music of the spheres.

This is my Father's world
The birds their carols raise
The morning light, the lily white
Declare their maker's praise.

This is my Father's world
I rest me in the thought
Of rocks and trees, of skies and seas
His hand the wonders wrought.

This is my Father's world
Oh, let me never forget
That though the wrong seems oft so strong
God is the ruler yet.

This is my Father's world
Why should my heart be sad?
The Lord is King, let the heavens ring
God reigns, let the earth be glad.

This is my Father's world
He shines in all that's fair
In the rustling grass, I hear Him pass
He speaks to me everywhere.

Monday, November 15, 2021

Addictions and the Goal to Control God's Thoughts

Relationships can be complicated. We often don't analyze why we do what we do, think what we think, or feel what we feel. 

We're too focused on controlling what others are thinking or feeling to realize the desire to control what others think or feel masks internal insecurity within us. 

For example, when we say, "I don't want you to think that (fill in the blank)..." or "I don't want you to feel that (fill in the blank)..." then we have a misplaced relational goal.

The goal to control what other people think or feel is a tell-tale sign of an addictive personality. That misplaced goal to control is actually driven by our need to feel good about what others are thinking or feeling about us. Secure people let people freely think and feel.

A desire to control is as addictive as narcotics. The only difference is that a control addict can keep up appearances. But any misplaced relational goal can lead to outward addictive behavior when the goal to control collapses and comes crashing down. When others outright reject you, no matter your efforts to control what they think or feel about you,  your goal to control has failed. Masking the feeling of failure is the basis for addictive behaviors. 

So, let's talk about our relational goal in terms of the most important Person in our lives. What is your relational goal in terms of God? What is your purpose in terms of God?

Most Christians would respond by saying:
 "My purpose is to be pleasing to God." (e.g. "I just want Him to feel good about me.")
Then, when it comes to "how" one is pleasing to God, the answer is usually:  "By doing what He commands." I propose to you that any attempt to please God by your obedience to His standards is a wrong goal that can lead to addictive behaviors. You will fail. To seek to become pleasing to God by your actions is a misplaced purpose or goal. 

You already are pleasing to God through the Person and actions of Jesus Christ. Jesus is the end of your goal to be obedient to the Law to obtain God's pleasure, for it is written:
"For Christ is the end of the Law for righteousness to everyone who believes" (Romans 10:4). 
"But wait," you may say, "I read the Bible for myself and it says that God's acceptance, blessings, and favor are on those who obey His Law!" 
"If you obey the Lord your God: Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the field. Blessed shall be the fruit of your womb, the fruit of your ground, and the fruit of your livestock, both the increase of your cattle and the issue of your flock. Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out…. The Lord will make you abound in prosperity, in the fruit of your womb, in the fruit of your livestock, and in the fruit of your ground in the land that the Lord swore to your ancestors to give you. The Lord will open for you his rich storehouse, the heavens, to give the rain of your land in its season and to bless all your undertakings." (Deuteronomy 28:2-711–12)
"And listen to these three paragraphs from the Law":
"However, if you do not obey the Lord your God and do not carefully follow all his commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come on you and overtake you: You will be cursed in the city and cursed in the country. Your basket and your kneading trough will be cursed. The fruit of your womb will be cursed, and the crops of your land, and the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks. You will be cursed when you come in and cursed when you go out. 
The Lord will send on you curses, confusion and rebuke in everything you put your hand to, until you are destroyed and come to sudden ruin because of the evil you have done in forsaking him. The Lord will plague you with diseases until he has destroyed you from the land you are entering to possess. The Lord will strike you with wasting disease, with fever and inflammation, with scorching heat and drought, with blight and mildew, which will plague you until you perish. The sky over your head will be bronze, the ground beneath you iron. The Lord will turn the rain of your countryinto dust and powder; it will come down from the skies until you are destroyed.
The Lord will cause you to be defeated before your enemies. You will come at them from one direction but flee from them in seven, and you will become a thing of horror to all the kingdoms on earth. Your carcasses will be food for all the birds and the wild animals, and there will be no one to frighten them away. The Lord will afflict you with the boils of Egypt and with tumors, festering sores and the itch, from which you cannot be cured. The Lord will afflict you with madness, blindness and confusion of mind. At midday you will grope about like a blind person in the dark. You will be unsuccessful in everything you do; day after day you will be oppressed and robbed, with no one to rescue you." (Detueronomy 28:15-29). 
"Wade Burleson, how can you read those two passages above and ever suggest to anyone that attempting to please God by a goal of obedience to Law is a misplaced goal or a meaningless purpose in life?"

Christ Is the End of the Law

"For Christ is the end of the Law for righteousness to everyone who believes" (Romans 10:4). 

The word translated "end" is the Greek word τέλος which was used by ancient Greek writers to mean goal or purpose. Most of the anti-Nicene Christian fathers (pre-3rd century AD) translated τέλος as "goal" or "purpose." 

What does it mean that "Christ is the goal or purpose of the Law"? 

Simply put:
"Jesus Christ is God's consummate goal and purpose for which God gave the Law."
The Law's purpose was not given for you to obey and to become "pleasing to God."

Nope.

 In fact, when God introduced the Law, all that did was make you a worse sinner by revealing even more of your sin.
"I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the Law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the Law had not said, 'You shall not covet'" (Romans 7:7). 
Any church, religious organization, or lifestyle that emphasizes obedience to Law to be pleasing to God has missed the Gospel. Christ is the purpose of the Law to everyone who believes.
If you go to a church that measures your love for God, they've missed the mark. Find a church that teaches God's love for you through the Person and work of Christ Jesus. 

The Law is about Jesus the Anointed One.


"Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith." (Galatians 3:24).
So if you wish to ever be free from addictions in this life, then get an understanding that you are pleasing to God by the performance and Person of Jesus the Anointed One (Messiah) on your behalf. 

Theologians call this imputed righteousness.

I call it living life feeling the pleasure of God independent of my performance.
"But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead." (Philippians 3:7-11). 

Thursday, November 11, 2021

The Potential Discovery of Lt. Col. Leon "Bob" Vance's Crashed Army Air Corp Air Ambulance

Lt. Col. Bob Vance, Army Air Corp

On July 26, 1944, a C54 Air Ambulance, tail #107470, disappeared enroute to the United States from England. Twenty-six people on board perished.  

Eighteen of the missing were wounded veterans, flying home on stretchers.  They were soldiers who had served the United States in the European War Theater. Flying with these injured veterans were a flight nurse, an Army Medic, and an Army Air Corp flight crew of six.

Somewhere between Iceland and Greenland, the C54 Air Ambulance crashed. Though search teams sought to recover the plane and bodies, the wreckage was never found, nor were the twenty-six bodies recovered. 

As we celebrate Veteran's Day, November 11, 2021, I can't think of a better way to honor our veterans than to tell the recent story (2021) of the potential discovery of that C54 Air Ambulance and the remains of its occupants. 

One of the 26 onboard that Air Ambulance was Lt. Col. Leon Robert "Bob" Vance from Enid, Oklahoma. Vance Air Force Base in Enid is named in his honor. The United States government would posthumously award Lt. Col. Vance the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions during the Normandy Invasion, actions that led to the wounds which had placed him on that Air Ambulance to fly home to Enid, Oklahoma, after seven weeks in a veteran's hospital in London. 

The heroic story of how Lt. Col. Bob Vance earned the Medal of Honor is compelling. It is told via a holographic display in the exit lobby of the beautiful  Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Normandy, France. I have been there many times and will summarize:

"On June 5, 1944, Army Air Corp commander Lt. Col. Vance commanded a bombardment group on a mission from southern England to Normandy, France, to soften the German beach defenses in preparation for the June 6, 1944, Normandy Invasion, codenamed Operation Overlord. 

Lt. Col. Bob Vance flew as co-pilot in the lead bomber, leaving England early on the morning of June 5, 1944, twenty-four hours before the infamous beach invasions of Normandy. Vance's B-24 bomber in which he flew was called the Missouri Sue. His mission was dangerous. The Germans expected an imminent invasion of France, but weren't sure where on the coastline, so German anti-flak, machine bunkers, and artillery were placed all along the Normandy coastline. 

Reaching his German beach-front target, Lt. Col. Vance ordered the bomb bay doors open and all the Missour Sue's bombs released, a command followed by all bombers following his lead. But the bombs in Vance's plane failed to release on the first run, so Lt. Col. Vance ordered a 360-degree turn for a second pass over the target, a very risky move since German anti-flak was zeroing in on the planes. 
Somewhere in the process of the second bomb run, anti-flak repeatedly hit the Missouri Sue,  wounding several members of the crew, and killing the pilot. Lt. Col. Vance was also severely wounded, his right foot nearly severed, and the melted steel pinned what was left below his ankle to the floor. He couldn't move. From a reclining position, Commander Bob  Vance took over flying the B-24 bomber back to England.  One 500 pound bomb which had not properly release hung precariously in the bomb bay doors as the plane sputtered toward England. 

As Lt. Col Vance passed over the Dover Cliffs of England, three of the four B-24 bomber's engines shut down. The fourth had to be manually shut down to prevent a stall. The damaged plane had showered gasoline all the way across the channel toward England. Vance, ordered his men to parachute to safety, and then he turned the plane back toward the channel during its forced descent  from 10,000 feet, not wanting the plane to crash on the English landscape with a bomb underneath, potentially injuring civilians.

Vance piloted the gliding plane back into the English channel where it crashed into the water. The force of the crash propelled Bob Vance from the plane and knocked him unconscious, his right foot now completely severed. Somehow Lt. Col. Vance managed to float to the surface where he was eventually rescued. The surviving ten men credited the actions of Bob Vance for their safe return to England."

Vance recuperated in London from his injuries for the next seven weeks. Unfortunately, Bob's career as a pilot was over. His right foot was gone. He wrote letters home describing to his wife and family the injuries he sustained, urging them not to worry, and that as soon as he was able, he would be on a medical flight home to Enid. His letters were initially filled with excitement and enthusiasm for Operation Overlord, and he expressed pride for what his bombing crew had done in preparation for the landing. 

His spirits lowered, however, when he left the hospital for the first time, hobbling on his crutches in the streets of London, and was met by a small boy who looked him over, saw his missing foot, and said, "Don't worry Yank, you won't miss it!" The emotional impact of realizing he would never fly again was enormous, and his depression increased when word came that his father, a longtime Enid High School football coach had been killed at the Enid Army Air Corp Traning Base where he served as a flight instructor. He died during a training accident.

The only thing that kept Bob Vance going during his recovery in London was the knowledge that he would soon see his wife, Georgette, and their two-year-old child, Sharon. Just before he left England, Vance discovered he'd been nominated for the Medal of Honor.

On Wednesday, July 26, 1944, Lt. Col. Bob Vance joined seventeen other wounded soldiers and boarded the Army Air Ambulance for their trip home to America. Georgette and Sharon anxiously anticipated their loved one's arrival. Sharon didn't understand much, but she could say, "Daddy's coming home!"

On Friday, July 28, 1944, Georgette Vance received a knock on her front door. An Army Air Corp officer and an Army chaplain from the nearby Enid Army Air Corp Training Base stood on her porch holding a telegram. They informed Georgette that her husband Bob was missing in action. Georgette collapsed in grief. Her two-year-old daughter Sharon tugged at her mother's dress, wanting to be held. 

Later that fall (1944), the United States government informed Georgette that her husband had been bestowed the Medal of Honor. She requested that the official ceremony be delayed until her daughter, Sharon, was old enough to comprehend what her father had done. Two years later, on October 11, 1946, Sharon Vance, Bob's soon-to-be four-year-old daughter officially received the Medal of Honor on behalf of the Vance family at an official military ceremony in Enid, Oklahoma. 

The Discovery


The location of the crash site, eastern ravine-filled and snow covered coast of Greenland

On November 1, 2021, at 10:25 am, I received an email from a man named Alan Hiett.
"Greetings, Wade. I have a ministry finding missing aircraft and bringing closure to families that hurt for years in wanting to know where their loved ones are. I recently found a debris field on the coast of Greenland that has the tail numbers of the missing C-54 that Colonel Leon Robert Vance was on with 25 other souls. I have images and coordinates. They have been presented to the Department of Defense (DPAA) for verification. I would be happy to share them with you and give you an update on the families I have been in contact with. My phone number is (202) ___ ___ . Thanks, Alan Hiatt."
As you might imagine, I was stunned. I immediately called Alan and since then have been in communication via email, text, and additional phone conversations. He has given me permission to post these photos from an isolated, unpopulated, mostly snow and ice-covered ravine-covered coastline of Greenland. He has a Senator from Maine involved with the DOD in an attempt to first verify, and then obtain the wreckage. 

The following is Alan's story in his own words. Some of the photos he sent me from the debris field on the coast of Greenland will be interspersed throughout his written narrative.
"My father was a United States Army Captain stationed in Neu-Ulm Germany. My mother, sister, and I joined him there in 1954. 

In August of 1956, my mother’s father was diagnosed with terminal cancer, and her family suggested that she should return back to the United States. My mother, sister and I flew from Frankfurt Germany on a DC-4 military charter flight, similar to the military C-54 Air Ambulance that went missing on July 26, 1944. We flew from Frankfurt Germany to Meeks Field, Iceland, where the aircraft was refueled, just like Vance's plane. 

I remember the refueling stop well. It was approximately one o’clock in the morning and cold as we deplaned and waited for the refueling. After we departed Meeks Field we took off toward New York City. As the sun was coming up,   could see land on the starboard side of the aircraft. It was the southern tip of Greenland. We were following the same path that the the C-54 Army Air Ambulance followed a dozen years earlier.
The White Star on the fuselage of #107407

Flash forward to October 2020.  I am flying on Google Earth up the southern tip of Greenland and all I saw was white from the snow.  Why was I going back up this coastline of Greenland? I was looking for a missing Air Ambulance that disappeared July 26, 1944 with 26 souls on board that never had the chance to return home to their loved ones. They had served their country in the European War Theater and were wounded in the invasion of France. Eighteen stretcher cases. one flight nurse, an Army Medic, and a flight crew of six on their way home when they disappeared without a trace. 

 

The debris field of Army Air Corp Air Ambulance #107407

I have a ministry searching for missing aircraft to help families find closure in the loss of their loved ones. I first took this mission up as a hobby because of my joy in flying (my mother was a pilot) and all the war stories I heard from pilots in Japan where we lived when the Korean War broke out. My father was one of the first responders into Korea and was wounded immediately and returned to Japan for treatment of his wounds.  

Complete debris field map of Air Ambulance #107407, Greenland eastern coast

While recovering at our home in Osaka, Japan my father would invite other wounded men to our home for R&R with some f them being pilots that flew missions in Korea and fly back to Japan from their missions. I would sit at their feet ( I was six years old) in our living room and hear firsthand about their missions. That is where I found my love for flying and my deep appreciation for our men and women in uniform. Some of the army personnel that came to our home were also nurses. When I first started searching for missing aircraft I called it a hobby but, after speaking with several families about missing aircraft I found very deep grief in their souls for their missing loved ones, not knowing what happened to them or where their bodies were. That is when I change my mission to a ministry helping people find closure in their lives.

The way I found the debris field in Greenland was an act of God. Again flying over the coast of Greenland with Google Earth I saw a red spot appear on the screen that got my attention.  I focused down to the area and changed the Historical Tool to a non-snow view and started finding the debris of an aircraft. 
Possible life raft
The first identifying debris was the 5-point white star, the word ARMY, the numbers 470, the number 70 on a wing section and it went on from there. 
Numbers 470

I have since communicated with several families that had loved ones on the aircraft and I am blessed with knowing them. 

Now it is up to the powers of our Defense Department to respond to what I see and feel is God’s will to verify and if possible to RETURN AND RESTORE these precious souls to their families."
I will be in contact with Vance Air Force Base, U.S. Senator James Lankford, and the Department of Defense. I do not know what will be required for a mission to the east coast of Greenland to investigate the wreckage site, The coast is already covered with snow and ice for the winter. The next time it can be investigated is June/July 2022. 

It would be a dream to recover the wreckage and any remains of the service members by July 26, 2024, the 80th anniversary of the crash. 

As Alan Hiatt would say, "Lord willing." 

10.11.1946 - Sharon is pinned with her father's Medal of Honor

Monday, November 08, 2021

Camden Robert's Award-Winning National Essay on "What Is Needed to Fix the Electoral College?"

Camden Roberts, a young nineteen-year-old scholar, and resident of Enid, Oklahoma, won a scholarship by writing and winning  nation-wide essay contest on answering the question, "What Is Needed to Fix the Electoral College." 

Camden is a member of Emmanuel Enid and currently works for the Red River Insitute of History as their Director of Operations while attending college.  Camden first heard about the contest and potential scholarship while a senior in high school. His high school guidance counselor at Chisholm High School told him about it. According to Cambden:

"This essay contest stood out to me because I saw it in the election season of 2020, where all over the news I was seeing poll numbers and maps showing which candidate was doing better and where. I kept noticing a pattern of how a majority of blue states had a majority of red counties. I didn’t feel like this was right, that a few cities can decide for an entire state where the electoral votes would go, so I mulled over a plan on how I would address this issue while remaining as fair to everyone’s views as possible."

Cambden will be flown to Washington D.C. to be recognized in Congress for his award-winning essay and then he will spend the week serving as a special intern on Capitol Hill. 

Well done, Camden! We are proud of you!

Here is his essay:

______________________________________________________________________________________

The Electoral College was established in the U.S. Constitution as the election process for the President and Vice President. Support retaining the Electoral College, or propose and support another system to operate in its place.

The Electoral College is a system of electing a leader that is as unique as America itself. However, this does not mean that it is perfect. It has issues that need tending to. I believe that it, like many other aspects of American government, requires further work to become just and fair to all ideas and people.

One issue that I find with the electoral college is that it does not equally represent the voters in a given state. I’ll use the 2016 Presidential election as an example. In the state of Oklahoma, a known Republican stronghold, the Democratic candidate still received nearly one-third of the vote. A percentage that great shouldn’t simply be thrown away because it is not larger. Although the state only has seven electoral votes, one-third (rounded) of the electors would be Democratic in that instance. This occurs in many small-numbered electoral states each election, but the same instance happens in bigger states like California. Trump received one-third of the vote there, yet all 55 votes went to Clinton. That automatically silences an entire third of the state and nullifies their vote.

Another issue with the electoral college is that it tends to favor the popular vote. I do not believe “People vote, not land” for this simple reason; people from the same bit of land majorly vote the same. An agricultural, rural region is projected to vote Republican just as much as an industrialized, densely populated region is projected to vote Democratic. However, when a single Democratic city has the same population as several Republican states, there is not a fair expression of each. Our Founding fathers knew this, and built a government with many checks and balances to prevent it. As quoted by Benjamin Franklin, “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what they are going to have for lunch.” As our population has grown and our nation and politics evolved, the electoral college should not be an exception to change. It is not a popularity contest, and therefore we should not allow it to become such.

To summarize, the electoral college is unfair for it favors a potentially dangerous popular vote while not potentially not providing a level playing field for opposing political ideologies.  I believe a system that takes some power away from the majority while respecting the trends of ideas in different areas is necessary. What I would implement would be an electing process consisting of two main parts. The first would be a standard popular vote, not too different from what is already n place, but the second part is where the change occurs. To keep the popular vote from ruling an entire state, or swaying a nation, the percentages of the popular vote would be averaged out with the percentage of counties in the state that voted for a particular candidate. Then the election process would include the power of the popular vote leveled with the geographical trends of ideas. Then the party elector selected for the electoral college would be chosen based on the averaged percentage of both the popular and geographical votes, not just the majority. To test this new plan, look to New York state in 2016. Clinton ed with nearly 60% of the popular vote, even though she won only 16 of 62 counties. In this new method of electing, a popular margin without a major geographical standing would not alone win an election. It would have flipped the state in 2016, taking away the majority that New York  City imposed on most of the state. Then the Republican and Democratic electors, correlating with their average percentage won, would be cast into the electoral college system.

In conclusion, this new method of electing a President would incorporate more aspects and include more safeguards to ensure a fair process. Everyone gets a voice, but a popular majority will not be able to win as easily. This allows a rural midwestern farming region to rest assured that they will not be overshadowed by a city with millions in the opposing political party. This will provide security to liberty of expression and justice of representation for all while holding true to the philosophies and hopes our Founding Fathers had for this country.