Category Archives: Chaplain

Indivisible: Movie Will Tell Story of US Army Chaplain (Video)

In 2012, this site noted the story of US Army Chaplain Darren Turner — a chaplain who had served a 15-month tour in Iraq and then returned home to face the very demons he’d tried to help his Soldiers survive. His struggles would eventually lead to separation from his wife. Finally facing reality, he quit the Army and worked to reconcile with his wife. They were soon back together and, as a couple, agreed to rejoin the Army to serve the troops in their calling from God.

Chaplain Turner’s story is the subject of a new movie, Indivisible, which will Read more

Chaplain Highlights Fighter Pilot Experience in Ministry

Chaplain (Maj) Kenneth DeVoie is the Wing Chaplain of the 104th Fighter Wing, which flies F-15s out of Massachusetts. He recently spent a year in Korea as the Command Chaplain for Special Operations Command Korea (SOCKOR) in Seoul. While his story is interesting, this paragraph stands out:

This Spiritual Guide credits some of his ability to succeed in that environment back to his experience working with the F-15 Fighter Jet pilots here at the 104th Fighter Wing.

“I think Read more

Board Recommends Navy Appoint Humanist Chaplain

Though not officially announced, a few websites and organizations have revealed that the Navy Chaplain Appointment and Retention Eligibility (CARE) Advisory Group has recommended that Jason Heap, an atheist, be appointed a US Navy chaplain. (The official silence may be because CARE’s decision was leaked in violation of Navy policy, which dictates the sessions be “closed” with members forbidden from “discussing deliberations or recommendations”.)

Heap had previously sued the Navy over its denial of his application to become a chaplain.  The lawsuit was largely dismissed, though some claims proceeded.  One site claimed the suit was subsequently “settled” under unpublicized terms.

Navy regulations say the CARE group is primarily composed of senior chaplains and other senior leaders. CARE ensures the “full spectrum” of professional qualifications is considered when someone applies to be a chaplain. The objective, in context, is to prevent people from becoming chaplains just because they meet the bare minimum requirements.

CARE’s role is to validate Read more

Air Force Chaplains: “You’re not going to be proselytized”

A fairly benign article on the chapel community at the small Schriever AFB, CO, listed some of the events held throughout the year. The chaplains went out of their way to say the events they host are not coercively religious:

“Our events are not religion-based,” Werner said. “During retreats, we hold educational classes teaching how to deal with life issues. You’re not going to be proselytized.”

Chaplain (Capt) Portmann Werner probably could have used a little more nuance in that statement, since some of the events the article referenced included Ash Wednesday and Christmas Eve services, which clearly are “religion-based.” Even marriage workshops hosted by the chapel generally allow for some element of religion, even if they’re not a full-blown religious guideline for marriage.

On one level, it’s Read more

The Veterans’ Chaplain and Moral Injury

At The Ada News, a local paper from just outside Oklahoma City, Richard Putnam wrote a short piece on “Christians and Violence” entitled “The Veterans’ Chaplain.”

Putnam, who apparently supports the concept of a military and non-pacifistic defense, also says:

How…do we square the business of defending ourselves and our loved ones with Jesus’ explicit command to not engage in violence? The answer is, of course, that we cannot. We cannot obey Jesus’ command to remain nonviolent and engage in battle to protect our families.

The short column is best summed up here [emphasis added]: Read more

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