REVEREND JOHN STOUT
Reverend John Stout at Cape Canaveral in 1964 where he worked for NASA contractor, Pan American Airways, as manager of the Air Force Eastern Test Range information dissemination system for the Gemini program and served as an industrial chaplain. (Apollo Prayer League archive photo courtesy John and Helen Stout)
Apollo 14 Lunar Module Pilot Edgar Mitchell presents Reverend John Stout with the packet containing the first lunar Bibles after his release from quarantine in 1971
A beaming Reverend John Stout opens the Apollo 14 lunar Bible packet at the Bayshore Sun newspaper office in La Porte, TX, after their return in 1971. (Apollo Prayer League archive photo courtesy John and Helen Stout)
Reverend John Stout, 2009
Reverend John Stout and Author, Carol Mersch, 2009
An Apollo 13 framed lunar Bible certified by Reverend John Stout and Apollo 13 Commander Jim Lovell as having been carried aboard the ill-fated Apollo 13 mission. Then-congressman George H.W. Bush along with Reverend Stout personally presented the Bibles to the Apollo 13 crew prior to launch.
Autographed photo of George H.W. Bush presenting an Apollo 13 Bible certified by the crew to Apollo 11 Command Module Pilot Michael Collins, then director of the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum.
The microfilm lunar Bible Edition 715 carried on Apollo 12, Apollo 13, and Apollo 14 was published by World Publishing Company and produced by NCR. The format of the microfilm Bible varied slightly between Apollo 12 and later missions due to improved technology by NCR. (Apollo Prayer League archive photo courtesy John and Helen Stout)
The unique multi-version Bible comprised of the Revised Standard Version (RSV) on one side and the King James Version (KJV) on the other was created by NASA employees on their own time the Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston to honor Apollo 1 Ed White’s dream of landing a Bible on the moon. The title “First Lunar Bible” can be seen in the upper left corner. (Apollo Prayer League archive photo courtesy John and Helen Stout)
The Apollo Prayer League was formed by NASA employees and friends at the Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston during the Apollo 7 mission. It grew into a global prayer network with members in approximately 60 percent of all regional postal zones in the US as well as 17 foreign countries. (Apollo Prayer League archive document courtesy John and Helen Stout)
MADALYN MURRAY O’HAIR
Madalyn Murray O’Hair, an avowed atheist, became infamous for her 1963 federal lawsuit banning prayer in U.S. public schools. She later filed suit against NASA in an unsuccessful attempt to ban religious acts in space. (Photo courtesy www.fliker.com, photo by Alan White)
The Apollo 1 crew during training in the Saturn-1B AS-204 capsule. From left: Command Module Pilot Roger Chaffee, Lunar Module Pilot Ed White, and Commander Gus Grissom. The crew died in a flash fire on the launch pad January 27, 1967. Before his death, White told a reporter that he hoped someday to take a Bible to the moon. (Photo courtesy NASA)
The “3 ½” silver chalice used by Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin to partake in a lunar communion service on the moon is shown on display at Webster Presbyterian Church, Houston, TX.
The hand-written card carried by Buzz Aldrin on Apollo 11 shows the verse from John 15:5 he recited during a private communion service on the moon. Beneath it on the card are verses from Psalms 8:3,4 which he recited on the return trip to earth when asked by Mission Control to comment on the meaning of the experience.
The silicon disc left on the moon by Apollo 11 crew, inscribed â€œFrom Planet Earth July 1969, measured roughly 1 ½” in diameter and contained microscopic images of good will messages from heads of 74 nations. (Photo courtesy of Tahir Rahman, We Came in Peace for All Mankind, Photo enhancement by James A. Rendina)
This message in Latin from Pope Paul VI etched on the silicon disk closes with a verse from Psalms 8. (Photo courtesy of Tahir Rahman, We Came in Peace for All Mankind)
Apollo 11 Commander Neil Armstrong prepares for a training exercise in the Lunar Landing Research Vehicle (LLRV). Armstrong later bailed out of the machine seconds before it crashed, as shown below. (Photos courtesy NASA)
Apollo 12 astronaut Alan Bean (left) presents a printed leather Bible he carried on his flight to Reverend John Stout. (Photo reprint courtesy of Reverend John Stout)
Apollo crew left to right Lunar Module Pilot Fred Haise, Commander Jim Lovell, and Command Module Pilot Jack Swigert exit the recovery helicopter on board carrier USS Iwo Jima, April 17, 1970. (Photo courtesy of NASA)
Congressman George H.W. Bush presents one of the Apollo 13 lunar Bibles to Apollo 11 Command Module Pilot Michael Collins, who in 1971 was appointed Director of Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum. (Apollo Prayer League archive photo courtesy John and Helen Stout)
On February 5, 1971, Apollo 14 Lunar Module Pilot Edgar D. Mitchell succeeded in landing the first Bible on the surface of the moon on behalf of Reverend John Stout and the Apollo Prayer League. (Photo courtesy of NASA)
Apollo 14 lunar module Antares rests on the surface of the moon carrying the first lunar Bibles. (Photo courtesy NASA. Photo enhancement by James A. Redina)
“A Moment of Reflection” painting by Ed Hengeveld depicts Apollo 15 Commander Dave Scott placing a red leather Bible on the console of the lunar rover before departing the moon. (Photo courtesy of Ed Hengeveld)
Apollo 15 Lunar Module Pilot Jim Irwin, a member of the Nassau Bay Baptist Church, carried a microfilm of a “prayer pact” bearing 250 signatures of church members and a verse from Mark 16:15: “Go unto all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. Our prayers go with James B. Irwin, David R. Scott and Alfred M. Worden”Apollo 15 Crew.” (Courtesy of Nassau Bay Baptist Church, Houston, TX)
The “Genesis Rock” retrieved by Apollo 15 astronauts Dave Scott and Jim Irwin from the surface of the moon is believed to be part of the lunar crust formed over four billion years ago. (Photo courtesy of NASA)
The microfilm Nassau Bay Baptist Church Prayer Covenant carried by Apollo 16 Lunar Module Pilot Charlie Duke on behalf of Apollo 15 Lunar Module Pilot Jim Irwin and the church carries signatures of church members under the header “We of Nassau Bay Baptist Church, Houston, Texas, Enter Into a Prayer Covenant with the Men and Mission of Apollo 16.” (Photo courtesy of Nassau Bay Baptist Church, Houston, TX)
Apollo 17 Commander Gene Cernan, the last man on the moon, with his wife Barbara and daughter Tracy. The astronauts’ children were assigned security guards during the mission due to terrorist threats surrounding the 1972 Olympic Games attack known as Black September. Before departing the moon, Cernan left Tracy’s initials in the sand next to the lunar rover. (Courtesy Jerome Bascom, Apollo Mission Photos)