Well, I’m wrapping up the first week of Navy Chaplain Basic Leadership Course, Phase 1. (I’ll call it Phase 1 for brevity from here on out!) I’m getting used to 4:30-5:00 am wake ups, and going to bed early; sweating it out during runs and workouts in the hot, humid South Carolina summer; and observing the Army folks doing what they do since Fort Jackson is an Army base.
There’s still an indoctrination aspect of the training – most of the students are newly accessed officers, or are seminary students discerning if Navy Chaplaincy is for them. For someone who’s been around for a while, it’s a great lesson in patience and humility – which are always good things.
I’ll keep this post brief, as I’ll reflect a bit deeper my weekend post. But I wanted to share some interesting ideas, thoughts, reflections from the week:
– The Navy has actually written into its governing instructions about Religious Ministry and the Chaplain Corps rules and mandates towards tolerance, mutual respect for all people, diversity of all kinds, accommodation in a pluralistic setting. These instructions also protect chaplains so that they may minister and represent their religious tradition/denomination in full confidence, while maintaining respect for other traditions.
It’s freeing….the denomination I serve talks and strives for it, but often struggles in making it a reality. At the risk of romanticizing the Navy, it is refreshing that the organization actually has found a way to make it a reality.
– “Our role as chaplains is to re-present the love of God according to the tradition of our faith for those we serve in their time of need.”
– “Our role is to help foster a more ‘positive’ or ‘healthy’ climate – what does that look like?”
– How does the Chaplain help with the development of individuals’ character, and why is that important?
– The chaplain’s role is to provide clarity and perspective in situations……is this also the role of the parish pastor?
I’d love to hear what you all think…..until this weekend!
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