Forthright is published by a group of friends, who believe in the power of the written word, for people who want to go straight to the Cross of Christ. The daily e-zine is published online, with original content not available elsewhere on the Internet. For electronic and print reprints, please read the fine print.

Copyright (c) 1996-2016 by Forthright Press. All rights reserved. Article rights revert to the authors after publication.

James Randal Matheny, editor
Barbara Ann Oliver, associate editor
Matt Clifton, webmaster

Our writers

Barbara Ann Oliver

Our Associate Editor is based in Winona, Miss. Barbara worked many years with World Evangelism Foundation, as layout editor for The Voice of Truth International and its Spanish edition, La Voz de la Verdad Internacional. She also did layout and design for many books for J.C. Choate Publications. She works with Gospel Opportunities Evangelism in a Spanish-language publishing ministry and with others who call upon her.

Barbara did mission work in Costa Rica for many years. An ex-beekeeper, you can find her still buzzing around beezoliver.com.

She occasionally turns into a writer for Oliver’s Twist.

Barry Newton

Barry, the son of missionaries to Australia, was himself a missionary in Florianopolis, Brazil and is married to Sofia, a Brazilian from Belo Horizonte. They have two boys, one in college and one at home. He now works with the MacArthur Park church in San Antonio, Texas, emphasizing evangelistic outreach.

Barry believes that the best biblical writing does not create new ideas, but simply involves stating “what is” in a memorable way.

He graduated from Freed-Hardeman College and Abilene Christian University, but remains an avid student.

His writings appear on Wednesdays in the Hands-on Faith column.

Christine (Tina) Berglund
Born in Danbury, Conn., and converted at 15 through a little mimeographed magazine ministry called “Christ for Today,” Christine was raised by atheists, but lacked the blind faith they had (Romans 1:20).

She met and married Gary F. Berglund, Sr. in that mission church. Gary then enrolled in Bear Valley Bible Institute at Denver, where she also audited most of the classes.

They have worked full-time or part-time for the church in several states, raised four wonderful kids, and now reside in Spring Hill, Tenn. Gary is the pulpit minister at Theta church.

Christine encourages us to Consider the Lilies on Sundays.

Michael E. Brooks

Mike is Minister of Missions and Evangelism with Highland Park Church of Christ in Muscle Shoals, Ala. He began preaching the Gospel in 1967. Since 1988 Mike has been involved in foreign missions in South America, Africa, and South Asia. Beginning in 1999 he devoted full time to missions, primarily in Bangladesh and Nepal.

Decatur, Ala., natives, Mike and Brenda (Campbell) have been married for 36 years, with three children and five grandchildren. Mike is a graduate of David Lipscomb University (BA) and Harding University Graduate School of Religion (MAR). He authored In Search of Perfection: Studies from Job.

As Director of Khulna, Bangladesh, Bible College, Mike divides his year between Asia and the U.S. He campaigns in Bangladesh and Nepal. Mike spoke at the 2003 and 2005 Bible Lectures of the School of Biblical Studies in Jos, Nigeria.

Mike jots down Field Notes on Saturdays.

John Henson

Born in Nashville, Tenn., John was educated in the Tullahoma Public Schools and attended the University of Tennessee at Nashville and Tennessee Bible College.

A preacher and a writer since 1988, he has been the editor of a weekly, and a writer for a daily newspaper.

He won the first-place award in News Reporting from the Tennessee Press Association in 2007.

John works with the Dibrell church near McMinnville, Tenn., and writes for The Fellowship Room and his congregation’s bulletin.

His articles have been published in The Gospel Advocate, The World Evangelist, and Tennessee Valley Christian.

J. Randal Matheny

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since November, 1984. They have three children and three grandchildren. He and Barbara Ann Oliver coordinate Forthright Press, Forthright Magazine, BrotherhoodNews.com, as well as other sites and offerings.

Randal plants churches in Sao Jose dos Campos and the Paraiba Valley region of Brazil. He writes and publishes material in Portuguese for evangelism and edification.
He authored Choose! 13 Choices to Transform Your Heart and Soul and coedited Straight to the Cross and The Right Kind of Christianity.

Randal says his piece on Mondays with Final Phase.

Richard Mansel

Richard began preaching full-time in 1995. He lives in Florence, Ala., and works part-time with an area congregation. He attended graduate school at Freed-Hardeman and Southern Christian, earning degrees in Ministry and Divinity. He is the author of The Most Important Question, where he describes the plan of salvation in a simple and compelling manner.

Richard is passionate about reading, writing and research. He is busy working on other books and learning more each day. His blog covers a variety of topics such as God’s Word, writing, reading, archaeology and biblical and secular history.

Originally from Florence, he’s married to Deirdre, and they have three daughters and a granddaughter.

On Tuesdays, Richard explores the meaning of life in Christ, with his column Living the Faith.

Rick Kelley

Rick was born in Akron, OH, and is a 1995 graduate of Lincoln High School, Shinnston, WV, where he met his bride-to-be, Samantha (Emerson). They have been blessed with six children. Their Friday lunch dates are pretty much his favorite thing outside of worship.

He has preached either by appointment, part-time, or on a full-time basis with several congregations, since 2000: Wallace, Pursley, Proctor, WV (2000-2004), Prestonsburg, KY (2004-2014), and currently Massillon, OH.

He is committed to understanding the Word of God as fully as his mind will allow, and communicating it to the broadest audience possible, for God’s glory.

He writes the column “Jesus Said” on Wednesdays.

Stan Mitchell

Stan was born in Abilene, Tex., the son of Loy and Donna Mitchell, missionaries to Zimbabwe. His upbringing was thus in southern Africa. He has a BA and MA from Abilene Christian University, and a Master of Divinity from Pepperdine. He did mission work in Zimbabwe for ten years and preached for ten years in California. For six years, he has served as pulpit minister for the church of Christ in Borger, Tex. He is professor of Bible and missions at Freed-Hardeman University, Henderson, Tenn. He is married to the former Marjorie McCarthy, and has one daughter, Tracy.

He has authored two books, The Wise Get Wiser, and the Foolish More Foolish, and Give the Winds a Mighty Voice: Our Worship in Song.

Stan does a Reality Check on Wednesdays.


  • Tim Hall
  • Mike Benson
  • Michael D. Greene
  • Mitchell Skelton
  • Emmett Smith III
  • Gregory Alan Tidwell
  • Dr. Jimmy Jividen
  • Kevin Cauley
  • Dr. Philip D. Sanders
  • Jeff A. Jenkins
  • Paul Goddard
  • Don Ruhl
  • Paula Harrington


One thought on “About

  1. I grew up with the Mitchel family in Lawrence Ks. A great family, Loy and Scott and I went to school together at Central Christian, Scott was roommate Loy next door. Loy has held meetings for us here at Romance Ark. Miss him and his good preaching. Are you at Freed?

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