Friday, September 17, 2010


Tomorrow I am officiating a wedding at Pax River Naval Air Station. Going through the gate this afternoon, showing ID and passing through security made me exceptionally nervous! It took me a couple of minutes to figure out why.

[Insert *back in time* sound/video effect here]

In February of 2007, I helped put together the examination retreat for our Conference Board of Ordained Ministry. Part of my responsibility was to set up at the hotel so that everyone knew which meetings were in which rooms. So, I had signs made up that I hung outside of each room. At the conclusion of the retreat I put all the signs in a cardboard box, closed the box, labeled it so I knew what was inside and threw it in my trunk.

In late March of 2007, my son Joshua and I were on our way to his first baseball game of the Spring. It just so happened that the game was scheduled to be played on base at Fort Detrick in Frederick, MD.

When we pulled up to the gatehouse that Saturday morning they were on high alert. Following directions we opened all the doors, popped the trunk and exited the car. Everything was fine until the security officer looked in the trunk.

Inside was my box from February clearly labeled B.O.O.M.! A rather unfortunate abbreviation that we use for the Board Of Ordained Ministry. Needless to say security went from high alert to HIGH ALERT.

It was a long, tense few minutes while I tried to explain.


I can laugh about it now, but it wasn’t very funny at the time. Two lessons looking back. One: always check your trunk! Two: we have to come up with a better abbreviation than BOOM. We just have to.


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