Tag Archives: Chaplain

USAF Christian Pilot Objects to COVID Mask, Vaccine

Though it doesn’t seem to have broken into the mainstream press, a US Air Force instructor pilot at Columbus AFB, Mississippi, has been fighting for months to have the military honor his religious objection to wearing a mask. Two of the pilot’s superiors approved the request, despite some misgivings. However, a third superior overturned that approval. As discussed in July:

The unnamed airman, identified as Capt. John Doe by the nonprofit First Amendment litigation firm Liberty Counsel, argues his “Christian beliefs do not permit him to wear a mask,” said the firm, which specializes in religious freedom cases. He was suspended from duty on May 17 and from flying on June 8…

As hills to die on go, this wouldn’t be an ideal choice… but he does have a point.

In the Air Force policy requiring masks published last February, the very first exception was for religious beliefs:

Effective immediately all individuals on Department property…will wear masks… The DAF-wide exceptions are as follows:

(1) when necessary to reasonably accommodate a religious belief…

Capt “Doe” notes that two chaplains verified Read more

Mikey Weinstein Falsely Accuses Army Chaplain of Lying

Michael “Mikey” Weinstein and his research assistant Christine “Chris” Rodda have been railing against US Army 1LT Alex Stovall for the past couple of months. Stovall is a member of the Army Reserve, and he’s also a candidate for Arizona’s ninth congressional district.

Stovall’s political comments – made as a candidate in the vein of Donald Trump – have drawn much of the MRFF’s ire, as has the fact he’s shown up in campaign ads and interviews while in uniform.

Making political comments while a civilian – that is, a Reservist not on orders – is a non-event. There are quite a few US military members in Congress on both sides of the aisle (according to the CRS, 14 in both houses), and they’ve certainly all made political comments about their political adversaries and the Nation’s leadership. When not on military orders, they are civilians and can speak as such — which is why Army Capt Alan Kennedy sued his chain of command over the punishments he received while participating in BLM “protests” while not on orders.

Even as a failed lawyer and JAG who was apparently relegated to administrative law while in the Air Force, Mikey Weinstein should still know this, but the accusation makes for “good” press for him. It attracts the attention of those who don’t know any better – even if it’s not entirely true.

Wearing the uniform while engaged in political activity is certainly an issue (and it has been an issue for others in the past), but it has nothing to do with religion or religious liberty in the US military, which makes you wonder why Weinstein is trying to become the uniform police for the military. The nexus for Weinstein’s cabal comes in the fact that Stovall is a Reserve chaplain candidate – and this is where Weinstein and Rodda go off the rails, recently Read more

Mikey Weinstein Fights Oppression of Vacation Bible School

Early in June, Michael “Mikey” Weinstein’s so-called “religious freedom” group ensured the sanctity of religious liberty in the US military by forcing the leaders of Fort Sill, Oklahoma, to pull down a banner advertising Vacation Bible School at the chapel:

An advocacy group that says it fights “church/state violations and noxious abuse” in the military said Friday it forced the removal of a banner advertising a Vacation Bible School program from the main gate at the Fort Sill Army Base in Oklahoma.

The Military Religious Freedom Foundation…said the banner’s slogan, “Jesus [Power] Pulls Us Through,” was objectionable when displayed at the base entrance.

Here’s the thing: VBS has been extremely popular at military bases throughout Read more

General Declines to Punish Chaplain Calvert over Transgender Comments

The Army has decided not to punish US Army Chaplain (Maj) Andrew Calvert with a General Officer Memorandum of Reprimand, creating the path for his record to be cleared.

In January, Calvert commented on an Army Times Facebook post that discussed Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin’s support for allowing transgenders to serve in the US military. Calvert’s comments – which questioned the mental fitness of transgenders for military service and noted the similarity with believing the earth to be flat in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary – drew criticisms and a formal investigation.

The Army’s 15-6 investigation declared that Chaplain Calvert had committed unlawful discrimination and improper political activity – points that didn’t seem to be supported by the facts. Further, since Chaplain Calvert was clearly expressing his personal and religious views – and not any official view of the Army – it was the Army, not Calvert, that was treading close to violating the law and military policies. As First Liberty Institute stated in an appeal letter published in May: Read more

Air Force Heathens Join National Day of Prayer

Hill Air Force Base in Utah held its National Day of Prayer on May 6th with the theme of

Lord, pour out your love, life and liberty, from 2 Corinthians 3:17.

The group heard “interfaith prayers” from a Catholic priest, a Protestant chaplain, a Jewish Airman, a local Mormon, and…a heathen. SrA Mark Udy is a beard-wearing “priest” serving the “heathen, Asatru, and Norse pagan community” at Hill AFB.

Interestingly, Udy spent most of his allotted time explaining to the group who and what he was, which is probably understandable given that it’s unlikely there were many people in the audience from his “faith groups” or those who recognized them. He did, however, cite a few recognizable names: Odin and Thor.

In a pluralistic government institution, it’s bound to happen. In some ways, what Read more

Chaplain Calvert Appeals Punishment for Transgender Comments

US Army Chaplain (Maj) Andrew Calvert made a Facebook comment in January that attracted the attention of critics – and eventually his chain of command. It has now been revealed that Chaplain Calvert received a “General Officer Memorandum of Reprimand” (also called a “GOMOR”) from III Corps commander LtGen Robert “Pat” White. This reprimand from a General Officer (rather than a lower level supervisor or commander) is a potentially career-ending punishment, and it accuses Calvert of “violating military equal opportunity policy and violating Department of Defense policy on political activities.”

With the help of First Liberty, Chaplain Calvert is appealing that punishment.

Chaplain Calvert was the subject of a 15-6 Investigation, so Read more

Mikey Weinstein Says Chaplain’s Christianity is Antisemitic

[Update: The WHS has pulled the article down.]

In a raging letter to senior DoD officials yesterday, Michael “Mikey” Weinstein launched a withering attack on an Easter message written by US Navy Chaplain (LT) Aristotle Rivera, claiming his mainstream Christian message is “anti-Semitic.”

Chaplain Rivera — a West Point grad who spent six years in the Army before another six years in the Air Force and is now in the Navy — wrote an article for the Washington Headquarters Services of the DoD, which is essentially the part of the DoD that encompasses the DC area. The article asked, “What did the people talk about at the first Easter?” The short article describes events about two months after Jesus died: Read more

Fact Check: Did Mikey Weinstein Protect Religious Exercise of Muslim Soldiers?

Michael “Mikey” Weinstein put out a press release yesterday claiming his MRFF – and it alone – was responsible for ensuring the religious liberty of two US troops of the Muslim faith. Ramadan begins next week, and according to the information released by Weinstein, but for him, those two troops were not going to receive accommodations for their faith during that time.

If, by chance, Mikey Weinstein did ensure the accommodation of religious troops, it would be laudable – and potentially the first time Weinstein has done something that resembled the name in his “religious freedom” foundation.

According to email traffic selectively released by Weinstein, the two troops had requested accommodations during the month of Ramadan, and they were denied: Read more

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