Do you believe God may be calling you to military chaplaincy? Candidates must—among other requirements—have earned a master of divinity degree or the equivalent, hold active ELCA clergy status, be physically qualified and pass a security check. In addition, applicants need at least three years of full-time parish experience. To learn more, contact the ELCA Bureau for Federal Chaplaincy Ministries: 202-822-6414; or email Darrell Morton.
For many returning veterans, the most difficult part of military experience comes after the joy of homecoming has worn off, when the full impact of what they saw and did during their service begins to sink in. Unfortunately, veterans’ families and congregations don’t always know how to help them adjust to civilian life.
“When you tell people you’ve been in Iraq, they change the subject,” said Air Force chaplain Christine L. Blice-Baum. “I think some folks are afraid to talk about it.”
That’s why the ELCA is developing a program to help chaplains and congregations minister to returning veterans. The “Care for Returning Veterans” program will launch in July, with more than a dozen regional training events to follow.
While the program is still in development, Darrell D. Morton, assistant to the ELCA presiding bishop for federal chaplaincy ministries, expects it to address, among other topics, the concept of “pastoral triage.” This will help clergy identify veterans who need more help than a minister or congregation can typically provide.
“We’re looking to partner with Lutheran Social Services on some of this as well,” he said.
To learn more, contact the ELCA Bureau for Federal Chaplaincy Ministries: 202-822-6414; or email Darrell Morton.
Call it the sacrament of the freezer pops.
ELCA chaplain Kay Reeb often surprised on-duty Marines with the icy-sweet treats during her seven-month deployment to Al Asad Air Base in Iraq. More than a quick cool-off in the searing heat, it was a chance to perform a military chaplain’s most important duty—what Reeb calls “ministry of presence.”
|ELCA pastor and military chaplain Kay Reeb serves in the U.S. Marine Corps. She recently returned from a seven-month deployment to Iraq.|
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