Gretchen Passantino Coburn
Gretchen Passantino Coburn (neé Beisner) is the co-founder & director of one of the oldest & best-known Christian apologetics & research organizations in the world, Answers In Action (AIA). She has been in full-time Christian ministry for 40 years & is a well-respected & award-winning teacher, author, qualified expert, & speaker. She has been an adjunct teacher on the undergrad, grad, & seminary levels.
Passantino co-founded Christian Apologetics: Research & Information Service (CARIS) in 1974 with her late husband, the well-known apologist Bob Passantino. She worked for & was mentored by the late Dr. Walter Martin, founder of the Christian Research Institute (CRI) beginning in 1974, serving as his Senior Research Consultant for 4 years, teaching assistant (1974-1982) co-author of The New Cults, & editor on nearly all his writing projects from 1974 until his death in 1989. As his TA she taught at Melodyland School of Theology & Simon Greenleaf School of Law. She taught as adjunct faculty at Biola University, Concordia Univeristy (Irvine), and Faith Evangelical Lutheran Seminary.
Passantino holds a B.A. degree in Comparative Literature (German Literature minor) from the University of California (Irvine) (1974) & a M.Div. degree (Apologetics emphasis) from Faith Seminary (2002). At Biola (1988-1992) she taught in the English & Communications department, including Journalism; Speech, Debate, & Critical Thinking; Composition, Writing for Publication, & English. At Concordia (1992-1996) she taught in the English department, including Composition & Writing for Publication. She taught for the Biola University Writers Institute (1988-1992) & was its sole director (1991-1992). At Faith Seminary she has taught in Bible, Theology, Apologetics, Church History, & Hermeneutics.
Passantino has authored or co-authored more than 20 books, including the award-winning Who Really Wrote the Book of Mormon, The New Cults, Answers to the Cultist at Your Door, Witch Hunt, When the Devil Dares Your Kids, & Satanism. She has authored hundreds of articles for many major publications, including Christianity Today, Charisma, Moody, World, Christian Retailing, Focus on the Family, Christian Parenting Today, Discipleship Journal, Journal of Psychology & Theology, Christian Research Journal, Cornerstone, Answers In Action Journal, & Christian Times. She was the news editor of Christian Research Journal, editor of Cornerstone, and director of AIA Journal. She has received multiple awards from the Evangelical Press Association, Christian Booksellers Association, and the Free Press Association.
Passantino has spoken nationwide at hundreds of churches, organizations, conventions, seminars, & schools. She is a frequent expert for radio & television news. She has been interviewed on Oprah!, Bill O’Reilly’s The Factor, Sean Hannity Live!, & all of the national prime time news programs as well as numerous local news affiliates on both radio & television.
Passantino is a recognized research expert on Satanism, world religions, new religious movements, aberrant faith issues, & reasons for faith. She has always been involved in medical & social ethics issues, but has a new commitment to apologetics in life issues (see below). The award-wining AIA web site (www.answers.org), directed by Passantino Coburn, is recognized world-wide for its sound research in these areas.
Passantino is married to Patrick Coburn. Between them they share 5 grown children & 8 grandchildren. In December 2012 her husband suffered sudden cardiac death from an arterial blood clot but was resuscitated with associated brain injury. He is well along in recovery, expected to make a full & complete recovery, something only a small fraction of such patients experience. Passantino has a new apologetics focus on life & death issues, euthanasia, “living wills,” brain function & mental function, & other issues she & Pat are experiencing in this journey of faith. Together Pat & Gretchen actively support life & death crisis issues & military & veterans affairs. Pat is a 2 time combat Vietnam USMC veteran & member of the American Legion Honor Guard (Newport Beach Post #291).
Gretchen Passantino Coburn. Answers In Action. Gretchen.Passantino@answersinaction.org