“America has approximately 63,000 closed churches, with more closing each year,” says Rev. Thomas Buckley ’59B.
That is part of the vision that spurred Tom and his wife, Carol (Brown) ’58B—along with five other missionary families—to found Church Planters to America in May of 1996. “C.P.A.’s focus is church planting in small-town America—anywhere in the United States where there is a need for a Bible-believing church,” Tom explains. “We re-open closed churches, help struggling churches and, where it’s needed, start new churches.”
Tom and Carol have been church-planting missionaries in America since Tom graduated from PBBC in 1959. When asked about his favorite Barrington memories, Tom recalls playing on the PBBC basketball team all four years, including serving as co-captain with Joe Perry his junior year, and as captain his senior year. The first player in Barrington’s history to score 1000 points (he eventually scored 1063), he was Barrington’s Sportsman of the Year and named to the N.A.C.C. second team for the 1958–59 season. He also was named to the Barrington Centuries Club, for his record-breaking score.
“For a guy who is only 5 foot 8,” he says, “it was quite an accomplishment.”