One year after its founding, American Bible Society presented 65 Bibles to the crew of the U.S.S. John Adams. This gift inaugurated an Armed Services Ministry that has since helped millions of U.S. Military members and their families engage with God’s Word.
As soon as the war erupted, American Bible Society’s board decided unanimously to distribute Scriptures to both sides of the conflict between 1861 and 1865, ultimately providing more than 3 million Bibles and New Testaments like the one pictured here.
More than 6 million American Service Members received Bibles during World War I, which helped brave young Troops engage with the comfort and peace of God’s Word during one of the bloodiest conflicts in world history.
Armed Services Ministry relied on faithful chaplains to share God’s Word with U.S. Military members. In this photo, a chaplain distributes Bibles to Service members during World War II.
Through our partner chaplains, Armed Services Ministry provided 3.8 million Scripture resources to U.S. Military members over the course of the Korean War. This photo is of an active duty Service member in the Korean War, reading his Bible.
From 1966 to 1972, Armed Services Ministry supplied 18.5 million Scriptures to U.S. Armed Forces in Vietnam. In addition, we sent 1,000 Scripture portions each week to be distributed along with food parcels in churches in Saigon. Pictured is a group of Military members gather for prayer during the Vietnam War.
Armed Services Ministry published a compact Bible with a desert camouflage cover and donated 300,000 to Service members during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. The 46th Vice President of the U.S., Dick Cheney, wrote that the Bibles, “provided a means of spiritual strength and enrichment for those facing the dangers of combat.” Pictured are members of the Pennsylvania Air National Guard receiving desert-camouflage New Testaments during the Gulf War.
In 2003, Armed Services Ministry published a special, Military editions of the Bible for the U.S. Armed Forces fighting in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and for our troops fighting in Iraq. We continue to send Scripture relief to our Service members through our network of 880 chaplains.
From 1817 through today’s increasingly complex global threats, Armed Services Ministry has supplied more than 60,000,000 free Bible resources to Service members, Veterans, and their families. That’s an average of 300,000 Service members every year engaging with the life-changing message of God’s Word—and we believe the best is yet to come.