religion column

About 30 years ago, my wife and I were driving home when we were captivated by three bright lights dancing through the night sky. We pulled over on the shoulder of the road, and for the next 10 minutes we sat spellbound as we watched these lights dart back and forth, circling together then quickly separating only to reconnect once more, flying ever and ever higher and then quickly descending at a rate that was not easily explained. We were pretty sure what we observed was not from this world.

It’s not such a far-fetched question these days: Are UFOs real? Are we actually being visited by aliens from other planets? The Pentagon is declassifying documents this month revealing decades of investigations into this very question, and Congress will meet to discuss what these reports uncover. I’m anticipating some excitement in the news over the next few weeks. How will these declassified documents impact your life if they deliver up more than imagination or speculation and if UFOs aren’t merely in the realm of sci-fi?

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Craig Cottongim is the minister at the New Song Church in Kingsport. You can reach him at