US Air Force Academy Hosts Annual Prayer Luncheon
Quietly and without controversy, the US Air Force Academy hosted its annual prayer luncheon last week.
The keynote address came from motivational speaker DJ “Eagle Bear” Vanas, a 1993 USAFA graduate and “enrolled member” of the Odawa Nation, a Native American tribe:
“Our spirituality makes us strong from the inside-out,” he said. “It strengthens and sustains us…
When we practice our spiritual faith, we make better decisions.”
The USAFA article references only Vanas’ “spiritual practices,” without specifying if they are Native American or simply generic spirituality (though his speaking business is focused on a “native” theme). Vanas spoke to the general virtues of faith.
Perhaps in a moment of self-awareness, the article made a point of commenting on the religious environment at USAFA [emphasis added]:
Cadet 1st Class Sarah MacKinnon, president of the Cadet Interfaith Council, said the Academy is a safe and tolerant environment for cadets of any faith.
“Through diversity of thought, we’re a stronger institution,” she said. “As a cadet, I’ve strengthened my faith with the help of others on their journey regardless of their religious beliefs…”
It would be an interesting discussion to hear how one strengthens their faith with the help of those of other faiths.
Still, it would seem the US Air Force Academy is making a pointed effort to publicize its support for military religious freedom, as put on display at the prayer lunch.
Wonder why this event wasn’t as controversial as those in years past?