“My Utmost for His Highest” is the title of Oswald Chambers’ classic devotional, and also happens to be what motivates Fred Butterfield to do what he does. He says, “honestly, my wife Janet and I simply want to please and glorify God in all that we do (1 Corinthians 10:31; 2 Corinthians 5:9).”
He and his wife are commissioned missionaries with Cru Military, founded and formerly known as Campus Crusade for Christ. They serve as the Cru Military Directors for the South Hampton Roads area of southeastern Virginia. In July 2016 they moved to Chesapeake, where they are working to advance the Gospel, primarily among U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps personnel and their families at and around the military installations in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, and Suffolk. Fred also serves as an elder at their church, Centerpoint Community Church.
“Janet and I have had a number of spiritual mentors over the years who’ve encouraged us in vocational Christian ministry as we were serving in lay ministry at various local churches.”
These mentors, as well as his educational pursuits have played a part in leading him to this ministry and prepared him for the work he does today. Fred took one seminary course per semester for nearly 11 years, while working full-time as a Federal employee, in order to earn his Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree. Afterwards, he pursued pastoral ordination at his local church.
One of the books Fred is currently reading, The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism by Dr. Timothy Keller, has quickly become one of his favorite books, and a resource that he is using in a one-on-one mentoring/discipleship context with two different men.
Along with reading, Fred also enjoys short-course triathlons, flatwater kayaking, hiking, bogey golf, theology, chess, classic movies, Boston Red Sox and Washington Nationals baseball, and playing Hawaiian-style ‘ukulele. He took up the ‘ukulele about seven years ago after he and Janet made an anniversary trip to Hawaii, and actually owns two “ukes” – a solid acacia tenor instrument, with traditional high-G tuning and a solid koa concert ‘ukulele with a low-G tuning.
“My playing is frankly ‘not quite ready for prime time’ – but I love it nonetheless!”
Hawaii holds a special place in his heart, especially the islands of O’ahu and Kaua’i. He says, “Deo volente (Lord willing), we are planning to fly all three Butterfield families out there for our 50th wedding anniversary – aloha nui loa!” Fred and Janet have been married for 41 years and have two terrific adult sons and two wonderful daughters-in-law/love, and are richly blessed with six grandchildren (three boys and three girls), ages five to nine.