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The Soldiers' & Airmen's Scripture Readers Association

The importance of spiritual health

ASRs Steven Dougherty and Mike Blackstock at the Aldershot Garrison Health Fair.

Image: ASRs Steven Dougherty and Mike Blackstock at the Aldershot Garrison Health Fair.

Earlier this month, ASRs Mike Blackstock and Steven Dougherty had a stand at Aldershot Garrison’s Health Fair and handed out complete Bibles, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs, WWI replicas, tracts and biographies. Since the Army recognises the importance of good mental, physical and spiritual health, Scripture Readers are able to talk about spiritual health and wellbeing at these annual Health Fairs, alongside other organisations that provide healthcare and wellbeing services.

It was Mike’s first Health Fair since ASR Jim Henderson retired last year.

“I was apprehensive going into it, but prayed about it and the Lord provided many great conversations.”

One of those conversations was with a soldier who had read ‘bits and pieces’ from the Bible, but asked Mike which book would be best to read first. Mike gave him one of the WWI John’s gospels from the stand and directed him to the passage which lays out John’s purpose for writing:

Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. John 20:30-31 (ESV)

Steven, who joined last year, was able to help Mike and enjoyed the opportunities to speak to passers-by.

“I was able to talk to at least five soldiers about the Christian faith and what we do as they came across our stand.”

Often such conversations open the door for future discussions with soldiers when the Scripture Readers are walking around camp.

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