Inviting you into the story

The story began with a bold prayer by a young soldier during World War II.

History and Roots

By God’s grace, it grew as friends and co-founders caught the vision. Now, countless prayers later, you can join us in celebrating what God has done and is doing through Cadence International.

“Lord, if I ever have a home of my own, You can have it for servicemen.”

 Jesse Miller was a young soldier stationed in the Philippines when he prayed this prayer. While he entered the Army Air Corps as a believer in Jesus, it was in the home of missionaries Dad and Mom Brooks (Cyril and Anna) that Jesse became grounded in his faith. There he learned to love and obey the Word of God. Along with other servicemen, he memorized Scripture verses and experienced the blessing of hospitality in a “home away from home.”

Jesse never could have foreseen that the Word planted deep in his heart that first year in the Philippines would be his sustenance through the following terrible years of surviving the Bataan Death March and being held as a POW.

What happened next reveals the roots of Cadence International, entwined with the stories of co-founders and friends: Jesse and Nettie Miller, Tom and Dotty Hash, Dick and Margaret Patty, and “Tark” and Alma Tarkington.

Home Away from Home

Seven years after Jesse’s release, servicemen gathered in the home where he and his wife Nettie lived in Manila, Philippines. The Millers were then serving as missionaries with Far East Gospel Crusade, now SEND International. Ministry to the military was quickly becoming their main focus.

“Now that I had a home of my own, I remembered my promise to open my home to military people.”

Two servicemen, Tom Hash and C.P. “Tark” Tarkington, were saved on the same night in November of 1950 in the Millers’ home in Manila. Both grew in their love for and obedience to the Lord and His Word as they were discipled by Jesse and Nettie and as they led others to know Christ. When their tours of duty were finished, both men returned to the United States and enrolled in Christian colleges to prepare for ministry.

Meanwhile, God had brought a young sailor, Dick Patty, to salvation in the Chicago Servicemen’s Center, where Dick had entered in response to the advertisement of “free food.”

More “Places Like This”

Dick had been raised on a farm and intended to return to it after the war, but God led him to Bible college first. By 1954, in obedience to the call of God, Dick was directing the Oxnard Servicemen’s Center in California, where sailors repeatedly said, “We need a place like this at Subic Bay in Olongapo, Philippines.” Requests for more “places like this” in Okinawa, Japan, and Alaska were also coming in to Dick, and to Jesse and Nettie.

It was June of 1954 when Jesse and Nettie, Tom, Tark and others gathered in Chicago for a reunion of folks from the early days of the Millers’ military ministry in Manila. They invited Dick Patty to join them, knowing of his military ministry involvement. After the reunion, a few remained to pray. Would God have them begin a mission organization focused solely on military ministry? The answer became clear—yes!

A Mission Mobilized

In the following months, the constitution and doctrinal statement were written and official paperwork was filed by Dick in California to launch the Overseas Christian Servicemen’s Centers (OCSC), now Cadence International.

God brought Tark together with a woman named Alma, and the two married during the years of Tark’s schooling. In September of 1956, they boarded a ship bound for the Philippines to take over the Manila ministry that had been started by the Millers.

Around the same time that Tom’s fiancé was breaking up with him because he had decided to pursue ministry to the military, God put military ministry with OCSC on Dotty’s heart. She and Tom married in 1956 and established the OCSC office in Denver before opening the Servicemen’s Home in Panama in 1958.

Dick met Margaret while speaking for chapel at Multnomah Bible College and then again at a Navigators conference in California. With only a few chances to visit before Dick left for the Philippines with Jesse and Nettie in January of 1955, Dick and Margaret wrote letters for several months. Then Dick proposed on a reel-to-reel tape, Margaret worked her way over on a freighter, and they were married at the Servicemen’s Center in Manila in October. After a short honeymoon, Margaret joined Dick in welcoming sailors to the Subic Servicemen’s Center in Olongapo.

“Lord, if I ever have a home, You can use it for servicemen” is a prayer God has been pleased to answer. Through many years, through many homes, through many faithful people sharing the gospel and their lives, God has been pleased to use OCSC/Cadence International to reach many, many precious military people for Him.