Why I’m a Presbyterian

[Note: Published date updated to reflect date this was originally written.]

23 September 2002

The story, so I’m told, is that a soldier was lying in a hospital bed recovering from wounds received during a World War II battle when a Chaplain walks in, looks at the soldier’s dog tags and says “Son, I see you’re a Baptist; could we have a prayer together?” The solider says “sure we can pray together but I’m not a Baptist, I’m a Presbyterian.” The Chaplin, with a confused look on his face, says “but you have ‘Baptist’ on your dog tag as your religion”. The soldier says “I sure do. I couldn’t spell Presbyterian so I just put Baptist.” The chaplain asks, “Why didn’t you just put a ‘P’ for Presbyterian?” The soldier said “I thought about doing that, but I was afraid someone might think I was ‘Piscopalian.”

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