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Meridianite Doug McCary brings The Cross' home

By By Ida Brown/The Meridian Star
Nov. 17, 2001
In 1987, while on a low-level training mission for the Marine Corps, Meridian native Doug McCary encountered a birdstrike while flying a military aircraft.
A 5-pound turkey buzzard crashed through the windscreen of his AV-8B Harrier, critically injuring McCary and severely damaging the plane. The near-fatal mishap marked the beginning of McCary's journey in evangelism.
More than a decade later, McCary has traveled throughout the country and abroad sharing his story, as well as the gospel, with others.
On Sunday, McCary will bring his ministry home with the presentation of "The Cross" at Highland Baptist Church. The Christian drama will be presented during the church's morning worship service. It will be televised locally on Channel 12.
Originating from The Promise Keepers ministry, "The Cross" is the story of the man who prepared the cross for Jesus' crucifixion.
At the start of the 30-minute performance, McCary enters carrying a 14-foot pine tree on his shoulder.
Realizing The Call'
While his near-fatal mishap brought him closer to God, it was several years before McCary realized his true calling.
In 1991, McCary moved on to a new career with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Jacksonville, Fla. While in the FBI, he worked on drug investigations, the surveillance team and the SWAT team. The job provided him opportunities to share the gospel with Christian groups and civic organizations.
Three years later, he took vacation time from his job with the FBI and traveled to Russia on a short-term mission trip sponsored by East-West Ministries International. The trip not only changed McCary's life, but also his wife, Lori (also a Meridian native). Both realized God's call to full-time ministry and, in January 1995, McCary joined the organization. For five years, he worked as an itinerant evangelist focusing primarily on the former Soviet Union.
In 1997, McCary met Dr. Leighton Ford and was invited to participate in the Leighton Ford Arrow Leadership Program. The 17-month intensive course in leadership and evangelism is designed to provide young ministry leaders with mentors and a network of resources to develop. It was through this program that McCary formed HisLight International Ministries, which is based in Houston, Texas.
In HisLight'
According to McCary, the mission of HisLight is "to serve God by helping the local church fulfill the great commission through communicating the gospel in a relational, relevant and Biblical way." This is accomplished by taking advantage of God-given opportunities to share the gospel and in the training of pastors and members of the local church in the principles of relational evangelism.
McCary, who has earned recognition as an international Christian speaker, credits the success of his ministry to his diversified background as a pilot in the Marine Corps, FBI agent and ordained minister.
Other missions
McCary is currently working with Mission America, Mission Houston and, specifically, with churches in Northwest Houston to develop an overall strategy to take the gospel to everyone in the city. He continues to partner with East-West Ministries, which focuses on church planting, training nationals and evangelistic penetration in the former Soviet Union.
In addition to speaking to many top level military and law enforcement leaders at conferences, McCary has conducted church planting campaigns throughout Eastern Europe and spoken at numerous open-air preaching events throughout Eastern Europe and the United States. He trains church leaders through HisLight relational evangelism seminars and Evangelism Leadership conferences in the U.S. and abroad. He also speaks at prisons, as well as Fellowship of Christian Athletes and youth events.
Lori, serves as a ministry advancement coordinator for Mothers of Preschoolers for the Southern United States and speaks to groups in Texas and around the country. She also speaks on missions and evangelism. The couple has three children.
Highland Baptist Church is located at 3400 27th St. There is no admission charge for "The Cross."