Virgin Islands National Guard Ministers to Troops
Members of the Unit Ministry Team of the Virgin Islands National Guard — yes, that’s a thing — were deployed to the National Capital Region to support the US troops who were supporting the inauguration:
“Our job was basically to ensure that soldiers’ morale and welfare remained upbeat,” said Capt. Dion Christopher, VING’s chaplain…
“We were based out of Ludlow Elementary school…where virtually all of Task Force Capital met, so we were able to bed down with the soldiers there, meet with them, and participate in a worship experience on the night prior to the inauguration,” [Sgt. Terry Phillip, religious affairs specialist] said.
The US military’s support for the inauguration is relatively low-key outside of the parade and military formations. Even so, many units deploy to the Capital Region every four years in January to support the mission. When they do, it is admirable the military takes the step of deploying chaplains and ministry support teams with them.
Remember, some people claim there should be no reason for the US military to have chaplains within the United States, since there are local churches the troops could visit. Like many routing training deployments, however, this mission to D.C. similarly put troops in a position where only a dedicated religious ministry team could adequately meet with and meet the needs of the troops.
US military chaplains go where you go — and that’s something only US military chaplains can do.