Even the best things must come to a conclusion. Sort of.
On 28 February 2018, I retired from the United States Army and Army Reserve. My total Armed Forces service extends back to July 1976. I began as a U.S. Navy top-secret linguist (Cryptologic Technician Interpretive; or, “CTI”) and concluded my career as a Colonel, U.S. Army Chaplain Corps, U.S. Army Reserve Command (USARC). Providentially, my final assignment was a perfect bookend to a military career: I began in the intelligence and security field and I ended it that way. Of course, the world changed along the way. And so did I. I retired as Command Chaplain, United States Military Intelligence Readiness Command, providing command religious support to Army Chaplains and “Unit Ministry Teams” (Chaplains and Religious Affairs Specialists, enlisted Soldiers serving as “Chaplain Assistants” [and since Chaplains are non-combatants, these professional Soldiers are also our “body-guards”]). My Chaplain teams were assigned to the United States Military Intelligence units around the nation and the around the world. From an E-1 to a 06, it has been a time of “living the dream.” Mistakes? Of course. Challenges? What do you think? Blessings? Abounding. I have received much more than I have ever given.
Thus, the page turns in the story of my ministry. Though I am a retired Army Chaplain, I am not a retired Chaplain. I seek to strengthen the younger Chaplain. The “cape of St. Martin” given to me must be torn in twain and shared with another.
This page is dedicated to “shepherding the Shepherds who will shepherd the Sheep” in the United States Armed Forces and the other vital expressions of Chaplain ministry. My emphasis upon ministry to the Armed Forces is not to diminish the importance of healthcare ministry or first-responders or corporate Chaplains. The emphasis merely reflects my own experience. We seek to encourage all expressions of the institutional Chaplaincy on this page.
Our site is divided into chapters:
- Calling: Chaplains as a distinct vocation within a vocation.
- Education: The Biblical-theological warrant for the Chaplain ministry.
- Training and Development: The intersection of Christ-centered ministry and resources to support that ministry.
- Stories: Chaplains learn through the stories of ministry: God’s stories of Chaplains bringing God to People and People to God.
- Issues: The predominant challenges invariably facing every Chaplain in every expression of Chaplain ministry.
- Books: Recommendations for reading to deepen and enhance the practice of the Chaplaincy.
- Links: Web-based resources to help your ministry.
- Bible Studies for Chaplains: A series of Bible studies for the Chaplain on the job.
- Sermons for Chaplains: Sermons for Chaplains in the Armed Forces, Corporate settings, Healthcare institutions, Palliative Care and Hospice, First-Responders, and Correctional Institutions.
- Senior Editor’s (Retired) Archives: of the Army Chaplain Corps Journal
- Essays: on the Chaplaincy.
- Credentialing: CPE, associations, and other information related to the professional credentialing of Chaplains for institutional ministries.
Faith for Living, Inc. hereby consecrates this module of our ministry to the Lord Jesus Christ and to His everlasting Kingdom; and exists for the express four-fold purpose of
- glorifying God;
- bringing People to Jesus Christ;
- caring for all for the greater good; and
- equipping the next generation of Chaplains to pick up “Saint Martin’s cloak:” the basin and the towel, the Bible, and the Stole.
We pray that many will respond to the call to Chaplaincy and bring the Gospel ministry of Jesus Christ to those individuals and groups who are in unique cultures that prevent them from attending or being a part of a local parish assembly.
“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged” (Deuteronomy 31:8 NIV).
“And he said, ‘My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest'” (Exodus 33:14 ESV).
“. . . I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Hebrews 13:5b KJV).
So, too, the Chaplain is called, sent, and sustained by the very ministry he seeks to impart: the ministry of God’s presence through the power of the Holy Spirit exalting the Lord Jesus Christ.
Saint Martin of Tours (Latin: Sanctus Martinus Turonensis; 316 or 336 – 8 November 397) is “patron saint” of Chaplains. He laid down his sword to pick up a Bible. He shared his cloak with a beggar, thus the very word for Chaplain comes from this act of mercy; from the Old French, cappellanus “clergyman,” originally “custodian of St. Martin’s cloak.” “Chaplain.” Dictionary.com. Online Etymology Dictionary. Douglas Harper, Historian. http://www.dictionary.com/browse/chaplain (accessed: March 5, 2018)