Michael “Mikey” Weinstein’s MRFF recently had a case of the vapors when they read the Southern Baptist Convention’s chaplaincy website, which includes the 1941 quote from Alfred Carpenter that
Every chaplain is a missionary in uniform, and an evangelist at large…
Weinstein’s group let loose the vitriol:
MRFF’s Constitutional [sic] civil-rights [sic] battle for separation of church and state in the U.S [sic] military faces vicious opposition from fundamentalist evangelical Christian dominionists hell-bent on ensuring military chaplains function as “government paid missionaries”…
As previously discussed, every Christian Read more
Christianity Today recently had a piece on Justin Wren, one-time aspiring Olympic wrestler turned drug addict and eventual missionary to the Mbuti in Africa.
The story is interesting if you like the wrestling/MMA scene or bad-boy-turned-missionary stories. More relevant, though, was the picture Wren used at the top of his article:
For the uninitiated, that’s the interior of the US Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel in Colorado Springs, Read more
US Soldiers deployed in support of Operation United Assistance (deployment to Africa in response to the Ebola outbreak) have many of the same — if not more — logistical challenges as those deployed further downrange. Chaplain (LtCol) David Bowlus described conducting outdoor worship services in Monrovia, Liberia, as the chapel tent ended up being requisitioned to house other Soldiers.
The article on the chaplains in Africa noted they are Read more
A writer with Combined Joint Task Force – Horn of Africa had a witty beginning to his story on the work of chaplains with their counterparts in the Kenyan military:
A Kenyan catholic priest, Anglican priest, and Muslim imam walk into a chapel.
This is not the start of a joke, but the beginning of a new partnership between Kenyan and U.S. military chaplains…Kenyan army Lt. Col. Alfayo Lelei, Kenyan air force Lt. Col. Lucas Gatobu and Kenyan army Maj. Mohamed Shukry [joined American chaplains] to discuss ways to better serve U.S. and Kenyan service members’ spiritual needs.
While chaplains protect the religious rights of those in the US military, some also serve “strategic” goals of the US military, engaging local religious leaders during conflicts and, as here, helping other nations in the development of their chaplaincies.
The French are reportedly entering what could be one of their most significant military operations in some years. They are assisting their former colony, the African country of Mali, in a fight against “Islamist militants.”
Mali is being joined by France…as it tries to beat back advances by forces linked to al Qaeda…
“Every means was used in fighting the Islamists, Read more
A few recent articles highlight the service of US military chaplains around the globe, doing far more than the stereotypical Sunday morning chapel service:
As the Army begins to open certain career fields to women, chaplains are affected: The 101st Airborne just received its first female chaplain in Chaplain (Capt) Delana Small. In so doing, she became a part of the “legendary Band of Brothers.” Her assignment was a result of the Department of Defense “Women in the Service Review.” The DoD article is full of praise for the new chaplain.
In Africa, US chaplains met with their military counterparts from nine East African nations for the “third annual…African Military Chaplain Conference” in Djibouti.
While Africa isn’t in the news too much, save a few isolated mentions, it is noteworthy that US military chaplains are engaging at the rate they have.
Another article covers the touching, yet surprising, story of the service of military chaplains at Arlington National Cemetery:
Led by senior chaplains Read more
Lost in the recent “scandal” over the revelations that family-run Chick-fil-A supports marriage (shocking, isn’t it?) were the other words of President and CEO Dan Cathy. Cathy expects that Christians will be missionaries to the world wherever they are:
Cathy believes strongly that Christians are missionaries in the workplace. “Jesus had a lot of things to say about people who work and live in the business community,” he said
While representatives of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation will claim this is “code speak” for Christians taking over the world, this is how Cathy explained Read more
US Africa Command chaplains recently traveled to newly independent South Sudan to meet their counterparts in the Sudan People’s Liberation Army. They have an interesting patch:
The patch bears a large cross and reads Read more