Dick B. interviews Christian recovery leader Rev. Ron Ross on the February 18, 2013, episode of the “Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B.” show.
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You may listen to Dick B. interview Christian recovery leader Rev. Ron Ross on the February 18, 2013, episode of the “Christian Recovery Radio with Dick B.” show here:
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Introductory Remarks by Dick B.
Rev. Ron Ross Interview Introduction
It’s not too often that we get to interview a Christian Recovery Leader whom we have known for many years, who has so many service stripes on his uniform we can hardly count them, and who has long supported our work.
Rev. Ron Ross is our guest today. And he has so many things to tell us that this introduction will be quite short.
Rev. Ron Ross is a pastor, author, teacher, and counselor. As founder of NETCasting Ministries, he equips the church around the world to care for the wounded and addicted. Ron is the cofounder of NET Training Institute. He and his wife, Janis, have two grown daughters and reside in western North Carolina.
Ron was educated in sociology, Cultural Anthropology 1973-1977 at Augusta State University. Also in Pastoral Theology at Emory University in1975. Then in addictions, 1996-1999 at Net Training Institute. He lists his employment as:
(1) Daddy Pete’s Plant Pleaser; (2) Dunklin International; and (3) Net Casting Ministries.
Ron is also the author of “Growing Beyond Life’s Hurts: A Christ-Centered Recovery Workbook.”
And we want to have him tell us about all of these to the extent time permits. Take it away, Reverend Ron.
Synopsis of High Points of Ron’s Remarks
Ron has been serving in the Christian recovery arena for 33 years. We have known him well for at least half of that period. His effort have involved preparing curricula, establishing recovery settings, and 30 years on the road helping churches and missions.
His parents were alcoholics—violent and causing much pain during his upbringing. But this really prepared Ron for a ministry emphasizing adult child of alcoholic issues continuing generation after generation. And, coupled with his own drug addiction, he used the background to help others. In fact, he appropriately cites 2 Corinthians 1:3-4, 7:
Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort. Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. . . . And our hope of you is stedfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.
Through his years, thousands have received the comfort of God as a result of this mission.
Ron is a cofounder of the NET Training Institute, headquartered in Florida. “NET” stands for “Nurtured, Equipped, Trained.” And when Ron began, there were few Christian training entities. Most were secular. Recovering addicts often had no college. But thousands responded, working to serve the world. And the philosophy was to reach where the hearts are and train. Ron has been succeeded at NET by his friend and colleague, Dr. Jean LaCour—president of the Institute.
Reverend Ron saw a particular problem in the church. He felt it was not a safe place for recovery. Alcoholics, addicts, and those with life-controlling problems could not open up without condemnation or a sense they were stigmatized. They needed understanding, compassion and comfort. Yet they were sick with an illness which consigned them to the church basement instead of a church redeeming him. They suffered in silence They had an infirmity that needed to be treated by brothers and sisters in the body of Christ.
On the other hand, Ron has seen a massive change—a new wave—in the 1980’s and 1990’s. And, as Dick mentioned, we have seen this wave pushed to great heights in the current century. There has been a huge resurgence of church comfort and concern for those who suffer from alcoholism and addiction—whatever the nature of the suffering. For example, Ron just returned from Kenya where 300 pastors asked: How do we comfort and care for this alcoholism and addiction problem in a different way. He believes the story of recovery is the story of the child inside—the wounded. Many disruptive issues are centered on childhood. And recently, there has been immense progress made in the Ukraine and Russia, he notes. In fact, he has long been in touch with International Christian Recovery Coalition Protsenko in Moscow. The object is to help the child get “unstuck.” The formula is to look at conflict, offer choices, and bring out of the conflict that means to become “unstuck.”
The new wave of Christian compassion and comfort has brought about “Cities of Refuge” where there are church support groups. Ron has worked with the late Bishop Frank Costantino and Pastor Mickey Evans, both centered in Florida. Ron has worked with Mickey at Dunklin Memorial in Okeechobee, Florida for all of his 33 years of service. He regards Mickey as the grandfather of compassion in the church setting without fear of dealing with social issues. He has developed curricula and continued to work with Dr. Jean LaCour, and ISAAC and believes that all of us are working together to see this emerging Christian Recovery Movement grow and grow among members of the body of Christ and fill the objective stated in Corinthians.