Religion

'Ranger Joe's God & Country' radio show airs weekdays

Paul Voorhees says as a Christian he is not going to be silent about his faith.

People in Columbus and Phenix City can listen to Voorhees "brag about Jesus" Monday through Friday on the "Ranger Joe's God & Country Show."

He is joined by co-host Joe Coley and guests.

The radio show airs 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. on 96.1 FM "The Dove."

Voorhees, 67, calls himself a "loose cannon for Jesus," someone who will go face-to-face with anyone to make his case that the U.S.A. is a Christian nation.

On the air since Oct. 1, the show is not all about faith. The first couple of hours find the conservative Voorhees and Coley discussing topical issues with political leaders, Fort Benning personnel and members of various organizations from the American Red Cross to the Springer Opera House.

"Some people just drop by," Voorhees said.

This week, Georgia State Senator Josh McKoon called to give an update on the Georgia Legislature.

Listeners play an active role, as well. "These days, people don't call a radio show, they text," Voorhees said. "I want to give everyone a voice."

"The show is about the community and not us," Coley, 50, said.

Music, both gospel and patriotic, is played during the show. "We have some real old stuff," Voorhees said.

The show begins with Rossini's William Tell Overture as did the old "The Lone Ranger" television show. Tune in and you'll a bugler play reveille.

Though the show has been on only a short time, Coley said there have 360 guests.

The hosts talk politics but "always with humor," Voorhees said.

Local news is delivered on the air but only good stuff. "Columbus is a great city," Coley said. "We focus on the positive."

Voorhees recalled being nervous on the first day of the show but said after just 15 minutes of doing it, he felt comfortable. "Those nerves were gone and they never came back," Voorhees said.

Coley laughed and said, "Some listeners liked it when we messed up."

The show is not broadcast from a cramped studio as many radio shows are but from a room where six people can sit comfortably around a long wooden table. There is a plaid couch and tan drapes line the walls.

Matt Jones is station manager and director of the show.

"He makes Joe and I look like pros," Voorhees said.

Voorhees and his wife, Janice, are the longtime owners of Ranger Joe's which has been selling military and law enforcement gear since 1963. Voorhees said he studied at Southeastern Bible College in Lakeland, Fla., and was ordained as a chaplain by both the Southern Baptist Association and the Christian Life Network. He is chaplain for the Harris County Sheriff's office. He also works as a chaplain for the Georgia Legislature and did the opening invocation on Thursday.

Coley said he has master's degrees from Columbus State University in education and public administration. He works as personal assistant to Vorhees and is producer of the show.

Voorhees gets a kick out of doing the show. "Being a Christian is legal and a lot of fun. It is exciting," he said.

He has begun Chaplain Paul Voorhees Ministries and has applied to the government for non-profit tax status.

Voorhees campaigns regularly to get daily prayer and study of the bible back into public schools. He wants to see the bible returned to student's activities and the school curriculum.

"This country is financially and morally broken. We need to have Christian examples in the schools," Voorhees said.

Thursday, he presented a copy of "The American Patriot's Bible" to every member of the state legislature.

"There is a preponderance of evidence in the book that is a Christian Nation built on Christian ideals," Voorhees said.

The book, edited by Richard G. Lee, is a bible that also contains special sections such as "Christianity in Colonial America," "Faith of the Founders," "The Bible and American Education" and "The Bible and Famous Americans."

A favorite quote of Coley's in the book comes from the late U.S. General Omar Bradley, "We have grasped the mystery of the atom and rejected the Sermon on the Mount. The world has achieved brilliance without conscience. Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants."

A quote attributed to Patrick Henry when he was Governor of Virginia goes, "It cannot be emphasized too clearly and too often that this nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians, not on religion, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ."

Voorhees has been overseas to support U.S. troops and to spread the message of Jesus. He said while in China a woman told him she knew he was a Christian because he was smiling.

"People there associate Christians with joy," he said.

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