VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 9/5/06)-Edward E. Bollinger, retired missionary to Japan and Okinawa for 35 years of service, died August 26, 2006, in Sacramento, California, at the age of 87. He was born December 21, 1918, in Kingman, Arizona.
Ed attended the University of Arizona where he received his B.A. degree in 1940. He attended the Northern Baptist Theological Seminary where he received his B.D. degree in 1943. In addition, he received a M.A. degree from the Graduate Theological Union in California. From 1943 to 1946, he served in the Navy as a chaplain. After his discharge from the Navy, Ed served as pastor of the Harvard Park Baptist Church in Springfield, Illinois. He was married to Margaret Donaldson in Tucson, Arizona on May 30, 1941. They had five children.
Margaret and Edward Bollinger were appointed on March 21, 1950, by the American Baptist Foreign Mission Society for missionary service in Osaka, Japan. They sailed for Japan in October 1951. In 1955 there were redesignated to Okinawa where they assisted post-war reconstruction, with a strong emphasis on developing new churches and training both pastoral and lay leadership. His efforts increased the number of Baptist pastors significantly and developed a lay-leadership training program, a campground, and retreat center on the northern coast of Okinawa. He was a leader in radio and TV evangelism and Christian teaching. For a number of years, Ed was the Pastor of the Central Baptist Church in Naha, an English language church servicing many families of American military personnel.
In May 1984, Ed wrote of the 29 years of radio ministry in which he was involved. The Baptist Hour was a weekly broadcast over the Ryukyu Broadcasting Company which began in September 1955. This was heard by every household having a loudspeaker. There were testimonies by some outstanding Christian laymen who first came to know of Jesus Christ through these broadcasts. In 1973 Judson College honored him by conferring on him the Doctor of Divinity Degree. Northern Baptist Theological Seminary named Ed the 1980 Alumnus of the Year.
After his retirement in 1985, he was Regional Evangelist for the American Baptist Churches of the West, wrote books and articles, preached in many churches and missions, and was the Associated Minister for the First Baptist Church in Sacramento, California.
Ed is survived by his four children: Dr. Timothy Bollinger and wife Lorraine, Steven Bollinger, Beth Glaze and husband Dan, Deborah Blanchard and husband Bob, 11 grandchildren, and 6 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 57 years, Margaret, and by his eldest daughter, Helen Cheney.
A memorial service was held on Friday, September 1, at 1:00 p.m. at First Baptist Church of Sacramento, CA. Contributions may be made to the Okinawa Baptist Convention in care of First Baptist Church of Sacramento, 2324 L Street, Sacramento, CA 95816. Condolences may be sent to Mrs. Beth Glaze, 4528 Andover Ct., Sacramento, CA 95864.
Andrew C. Jayne American Baptist Churches, USA Mission Resource Development http://www.abc-usa.org/