US military Chaplains serve all. They serve regardless of faith or lack thereof. They provide counsel and reassurance independent of affiliation. While staying true to their own religious tenets, they aggressively support all personnel with whatever they require to meet their spiritual and religious needs.
“Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then, I said, Here am I; Send me.” – Isaiah 6:8
From a recent article by the Military Religious Freedom Foundation’s researcher:
[This] Bible verse…was the theme of Secretary of the Army Pete Geren’s commencement address at West Point last year. Geren opened and closed his speech by quoting the verse, and, throughout his speech, painted the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as a religious struggle.
The entire text of Geren’s commencement speech, given to the US Military Academy in 2008, is available online. He mentions a religious topic four times, none as conspiratorial as the MRFF asserts. Each citation follows: Read more
Americans United for the Separation of Church and State filed a complaint with the IRS claiming that Liberty University was violating the federal tax code (as a tax-exempt entity) by “banning” a Democratic group while allowing a Republican one.
Liberty Counsel, the legal arm of the Falwell associated group that includes Liberty University, has responded by filing its own complaint to the IRS, claiming that AU uses IRS complaints as a means to “intimidate, silence, and harm” those with whom it disagrees. Read more
Over the past few months, the Air Force has made a point of celebrating its diversity, including significant events for Women’s History Month and production of an entire video by senior leadership entitled “Diversity and Equal Opportunity in Our Air Force.”
Notably, Brig. Gen. Ronnie Hawkins Jr. said that the examples he saw in a General Officer inspired him in his career:
I wouldn’t be where I am had I not seen another African American general officer back when I was a second lieutenant, and in so doing I said, ‘Hey, there is room and value for me.’
That same quality of inspiration was noted by Major Nicole Malachowski, the first female to fly as an Air Force Thunderbird, who herself was inspired by female aviators:
It means something for young people on the autograph line to see someone who looks like them. As a Thunderbird I was there to say, ‘of course you can.’
It is a virtual cliche that throughout history, men and women have been inspired when they have seen the success of people who were like them. This is particularly true when those who have previously succeeded have done so in adverse or hostile environments. Observing success in someone who shares qualities, values, or physical characteristics can inspire others like them to aim for similar success.
For that same reason, men and women of faith can be inspired when they see successful military officers express their faith. Read more
Some have described the actions as necessary given the high demand for UAV missions in the ongoing conflicts. Others have worried that removing pilots from their pilot role (of actual aircraft) when they have little to no experience may doom their ability to return to the cockpit after 3 to 4 years of the non-flying tour.
President Barack Obama signed a proclamation (pdf) for Memorial Day calling on Americans to remember the sacrifices of their servicmen and women, and to unite in prayer. US law calls on the President to declare each Memorial Day as a “day of prayer for permanent peace” and designate a time for the country to unite in prayer. A separate law designates 1500 local time as the “National Moment of Remembrance.”
From the proclamation Read more
Army Chaplain (Capt.) James Key writes an interesting commentary in “Memorial Day from chaplain’s foxhole,” reiterating the important role Chaplains play to the lives and service of all military members, regardless of faith, or lack thereof.
Military chaplains guide Soldiers and their families through the ”Circle of Life” from births, baptisms, confirmations, marriage, illness and death. Our role is broader than a typical civilian minister because we have to connect Soldiers to God on a daily basis…
During my deployment I served as chaplain for a 600-Soldier logistics battalion in Baghdad. Whoever said ”there are no atheists in the foxhole” may have been absolutely right.
As is often the case, the Chaplain noted how needed their services are in support of combat roles, despite implications to the contrary Read more
Update: The pilot, Capt. Mark P. Graziano, a student at the USAF Test Pilot School, has been reported killed in the crash. The backseater of the two place aircraft, Maj. Lee V. Jones, a navigator training as a flight test engineer, was injured.
An F-22 crashed at Edwards just under 2 months ago, killing the contract Lockheed pilot.