CNN Covers Chaplains in Foxholes

“They truly serve God and country…”

Despite some military atheists’ assertions that Chaplains aren’t permitted on the frontlines, CNN covers the US Army’s training of Chaplains at Fort Jackson for their service…on the frontlines.

In an article entitled “Preparing clergy for war: army chaplains train by the hundred for the combat zone,” CNN highlights the hundreds of Chaplains preparing to serve in war.

The summer sun beats down on camouflaged Kevlar helmets. Weighed down by heavy body armor, men and women of the cloth are crawling through sand, under barbed wire and learning how to run with soldiers.

Explosions in woods simulate the battlefield as an instructor barks commands.

The article notes the Chaplains’ selfless — and unarmed — service to their fellow Soldiers, a service enabled by the credibility of being right next to them in combat.

The article also remembers the death last year of Chaplain Dale Goetz in Afghanistan — a point that reminds the new Chaplains of the seriousness of their profession.

But that reminder does not deter them from their purpose.

As an aside, Chaplain Carlton Birch, acting as spokesman for the Army Chaplaincy, said

“Our country is becoming more pluralist…We’ve had our first Buddhist chaplain, now we have our first Hindu chaplain. Our chaplain corps has had to adapt.”

This appears to be the first official statement on Chaplain (Capt) Pratima Dharm, who converted to (or ‘added,’ in her mind) Hinduism from her Christian faith.