home
RSS
Slain Americans were delivering Bibles
February 22nd, 2011
11:15 AM ET

Slain Americans were delivering Bibles

Americans Jean and Scott Adam were on a mission to distribute Bibles around the world when their yacht was hijacked by Somali pirates, friends of the couple said.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Central Command said the Adams, along with Philis Macay and Bob Riggle, had been killed by their captors.

A U.S. Navy ship had been trailing the captured Americans after their yacht, Quest, was overtaken by pirates on Friday.

“As (U.S. forces) responded to the gunfire, reaching and boarding the Quest, the forces discovered all four hostages had been shot by their captors," the statement from U.S. Central Command said. "Despite immediate steps to provide life-saving care, all four hostages ultimately died of their wounds."

While their faith may not have played a role in their death, it was a motivating factor for their sailing adventure around the world.

“They were not proselytizing evangelicals," Scott Stolnitz, a friend of the couple, told CNN. "They were using their Bible mission as a way to break the ice in the Christian community, particularly in the Pacific.”

Stolnitz said the Adams were friendly and open to all. “These are your next-door neighbors in a lot of ways.”

Their pastor, Msgr. Lloyd Torgerson of Saint Monica's Catholic Church in Santa Monica, California, told CNN affiliate KABC the Adams were a retired couple with a heart for sharing their faith.

“They were very heartfelt in their response to this great gospel and they came to know Jesus in a very special way here,” Togerson said.

“Jean actually sang in our 11:30 choir Sunday mornings. Both of them had a great outreach, of course, through this ministry to take the scriptures, the Bibles, to places across the world. And they felt that call to do that, and that’s what they were doing I presume when this happened.”

The Adams' website chronicles their worldwide voyage, which included trips to New Zealand, China, Cambodia and Panama.

They also spoke openly about their faith on the site, saying the goal of the Bible distribution was, "friendship evangelism - that is, finding homes for thousands of Bibles, which have been donated through grants and gifts, as we travel from place to place."

The Adams passed out Catholic Bibles from the American Bible Society and New International Version Bibles from the International Bible Society, according to their website. They said they brought two different versions of the Bible because, “Catholics have a slightly different Bible than Protestants. We carry both Bibles, and at several different reading levels.”

On their website they said many of the teachers and pastors who received the Bibles also used them for teaching English.

The Adams, Macay and Riggle had been traveling with yachts participating in the Blue Water Rally since their departure from Phuket, Thailand, rally organizers said Sunday in a statement on the event's website.

The group, which organizes long-distance group cruises, said the Quest broke off on February 15 after leaving Mumbai, India, to take a different route.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Africa • Belief • California • Catholic Church • Christianity • United States • Violence

« Previous entry
soundoff (406 Responses)
  1. Confused

    Does this mean Allah or Yahweh won this round?
    If they are all one and the same, how does the Almighty let evil triumph? Did the devil win this round?
    The religious can not simply say 'God intended this', that is a weak argument that further makes your point foolish.
    How can you still be religious after this?
    I believe in God, but no religion.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:30 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Confused,

      God won because His Word was spread so much faster because the devil interfered [it back-fired on the devil]; now people the world over want to know what the Bible has to say….why were these Christians willing to risk their lives so others could read the Bible’s Truth…they will want to find out!

      God does not do evil but He allows others to use their freewill and do evil if they wish. If God stepped in and prevented people from using their freewill then it wouldn’t be ‘freewill’.

      Do you believe in God but not religion because you do not like following any sort of ‘rules’? Do you like getting off the easy Path and floundering in the dark? If you really followed Christ, taking up your cross and following in His footsteps, you would find His yoke is easy because love abounds along His Path.

      February 22, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  2. Pirate

    How stupid were these folks? Everyone knows you don't try to convert Muslims to Christianity, and you get in HUGE trouble for passing out Bibles. They were asking for trouble.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
  3. rb

    Dwight – I truly pray for your soul....you are obviously ridden with a lot of anger....God does love you and he is very real

    February 22, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
  4. Atheists are fools

    What a bunch of foolish ignorant people (aka atheist) on this board. Are you 3 years old? This is life people die people get murdered by evil people. Tell you what ,see ya on the other side, my human nature just can't wait til your ignorant buts bow to God and you will wish you followed the Lord. I am not very compassionate today as I read these comments and think go spend eternity in hell, I really could care lessa bout your sorry rears today. Itis not going to be a party over there. Thankful I have Jesus Christ because I am as fallen as all of you I just have a Savior!!
    Again see you on ther other side!!!!!
    Enough of my life wasted on you...off to spend time with better things in life, than negative ignorant fools.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • The Bobinator

      > What a bunch of foolish ignorant people (aka atheist) on this board.

      I'd say stereotyping is one of the more ignorant things a person can do.

      > Are you 3 years old? This is life people die people get murdered by evil people.

      Yes, yes they do.

      > Tell you what ,see ya on the other side, my human nature just can't wait til your ignorant buts bow to God and you will wish you followed the Lord.

      Self-affirming nonsense. You're villifying people who hold a different position then you do so that you can feel better about your position.

      > I am not very compassionate today as I read these comments and think go spend eternity in hell, I really could care lessa bout your sorry rears today.

      If you think a post with a lack of compassion for people that they didn't know warrents eternal damnation and you "don't care about it", you're far worse then those "atheists" ever could be. You disregard Jesus' teachings and have malice in your heart. You should be ashamed of your childish and judgemental post.

      > Itis not going to be a party over there. Thankful I have Jesus Christ because I am as fallen as all of you I just have a Savior!!

      What if believing in Jesus is what damns you. What if God made all religions to test people and see if they'd fall for that nonsense. I mean, it's not like he didn't put enough information in the bible to prove that it's a bunch of flop.

      > Again see you on ther other side!!!!!

      Oh, you mean the side you assume to exist despite having no objective evidence to prove? See you in unicorn marshmellow happy fun land! Enough of my life wasted on you...off to spend time with better things in life, than negative ignorant fools.

      Odd that a Christian who is instructed to explain his position and his faith would consider this as a "waste" of his life. Isn't your life supposed to be dedicated to getting into heaven?

      February 22, 2011 at 12:38 pm |
  5. Juan

    Those who surrender their lives for Christ do not do so in vain!

    February 22, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
  6. barney

    Looks like God didn't want them to deliver any more bibles.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:20 pm |
  7. Juan

    Those who surrender their lives for Christ do not die in vain. The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church wherever they are.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:20 pm |
  8. Dwight

    In my neck of the woods we have all kinds of churches. ( Muslims, Baptist, Catholic and so on ) Each one says they are the real ones. In fact I have some friends who are Christians who want to kill all the other Christians and Muslims because they are the fake religions. I tell you this. Religious people scare me because they want to kill everyone.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • MarkyMerlot

      Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition; Our weapon is fear ... fear and suprise...Our 2 weapons are fear, suprise and ruthless efficiency...amongst our weaponry are such diverse elements as, fear, surprise, ruthless efficiency, an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope, and nice red uniforms—oh damn. Oh, if you don't confess, old woman, you will get only a cup of coffee at 11" o'clock and make the torture worse, by shouting a lot.
      – shame the real inquisition wasn't a comedy!

      February 22, 2011 at 12:59 pm |
  9. Joker

    Dwight...remember he answers prayers and when prayers dont get answered it becomes..."his will or plan" Talk about a group with low expectations in their god. LOL

    February 22, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
    • Dwight

      Joker!! You are so correct!!

      February 22, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • WishI hadnt

      LOL You are soooo right.Sorry but these were preventable deaths.Reminds of the idiots "hiking" in Iran.

      February 22, 2011 at 7:34 pm |
  10. Dwight

    To all the religious people. Please get another fancy boat and load it up with bibles. Go to that part of the world and see what happens. I promise you this. No amount of prayers will protect you but guess what? You religious people will do it anyways. Not smart!!! Not smart at all.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
  11. 1Lt1AirCav

    While my gut reaction is a scorched earth policy towards the Somali pirates, I am aware of how difficult it had to have been for our Navy to intercede in this matter and not produce the same result. However, from this point on, it's gloves off!

    February 22, 2011 at 12:11 pm |
  12. Dwight

    Nue! If this is your idea of a loving GOD please keep him/her away from me.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:10 pm |
  13. Dennis

    "While their faith may not have played a role in their death, it was a motivating factor for their sailing adventure around the world."

    One of the dumber lines you're likely to read among the countless inanities written about religion. Very sad to see people lose their lives, but their "mission" and the faith babbling that follows the story are noxious.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
  14. Was Buf., Now Was.

    Bible delivery through the world's most dangerous waterways, filled with pirates who regularly kill people and who are given an added bonus of going after religious enemies? Wow, this is good for thinning the herd. Darwin awards here we come.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
    • SurelyUjest

      Actually it seems really silly these folks were traveling in an armada of 4 ships for safety then for unknown reasons split off and the rest we know. Darwin has weeded out some more idiots with little comonsense end of story. We just wasted tax money trying to save idiots from there own actions. To the family and friends of these 4 well meaning people I send my condolences, to the church the belonged to I would like to send the bill for the gas, bullets and time our military spent trying to save them.

      February 22, 2011 at 12:33 pm |
  15. DM

    Moral of the story: stay as far away from the toilet known as Somalia as you can.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
  16. mickey

    so some wealthy people on a yacht sailed into pirate infested waters to hand out bibles to muslims and it ended badly?

    February 22, 2011 at 12:06 pm |
    • MarkyMerlot

      I guess Darwin strikes again!

      February 22, 2011 at 12:50 pm |
  17. Vince

    @Bob... sorry... but Their God failed him... so stop with the blah blah blahing... the bible... It was written by bunch of drunken nomads...

    @BoBintator... so true.. hell they will go... for ETERNITY...

    February 22, 2011 at 12:06 pm |
    • Dennis

      God is sovergn. He did not fail them, they are with him in glory. But because of their death his message is traveling further and faster than any man could cary his message by boat. His message is now being discussed on the internet by many people who would not be open to his message directly. I am thankful that their marterdom was not in vain but for the expantion of the gospel to all nations. All glory to God.

      February 22, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • SurelyUjest

      Hey Dennis so it would seem you care more about the message than these messengers. How easily you trade human life for the spreading of your personal religious agenda. Doesn't that make you a religious terrorist?

      February 22, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      How many Bibles do you think they had on board? 100? 10,000? Knowing that God can take an evil act and bring good out of it, I would not be surprised if the whole world has heard by now and this will bring many to want to find out more about the Bible themselves.

      Matthew 10:39
      He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for me, shall find it.

      February 22, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  18. prowler

    funny to see how squeamish christians get over something like this. its the same way Muslims are treated in the racist southern US states where they harass Muslims and burn their mosques. its not like such deeply christian organizations such as the KKK or Nazi party never murdered anyone they didn't religiously agree with.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
    • Cris

      Where in the south has a mosque been burned? Where have Muslims been harassed? I think you are bigioted, uneducated one. Give me proof or STFU.

      February 22, 2011 at 12:28 pm |
  19. The Bobinator

    Isn't that interesting though, from a Christian perspective I mean. It's God's plan that these people were to die while carrying his message. This means that the people who might have been saved might not now be saved and spend eternity in hell.

    Kind of an odd thing for God to do nes pas?

    February 22, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • SurelyUjest

      It is all silly blah blah blah to keep the sheep feeling happy.

      February 22, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      The Bobinator,

      How many Bibles do you think they had on board? How many people are aware of this story about Christians willing to risk their lives to bring the Word of God to them?

      Knowing that God can take an evil act and bring good out of it, I would not be surprised if the whole world has heard by now and this will bring many to want to find out more about the Bible themselves.

      Matthew 10:39
      He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for me, shall find it.

      February 22, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  20. Bob

    *sigh*, Vince. Plenty of people have died for their belief in Jesus and His Gospel. While I doubt this instance was motivated by theirs or the pirates' beliefs (they probably just wanted the boat), Jesus said following Him would not be easy. I for one am grateful that I can practice and share my faith without fear for my life, unlike Christians in other parts of the world.

    February 22, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • Dwight

      There is no god. I do not believe in that silly religion. I'm an atheist. Proud of it. I served 6 years in the military to be what I am. Never and I mean never come to my door and give me a bible. But guess what? I still help people and I do what I can to make the world better.

      February 22, 2011 at 12:06 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
« Previous entry
Advertisement
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.