The Voice for Chaplaincy - Chartered by Congress - Serving Since 1925
Weekly Newsgram - May 9th 2018

Executive Director  Notes

   Last week we had a remarkable National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting at Ft Jackson, SC on Tuesday and Wednesday, 1 and 2 May. There was a remarkable ability  - especially for me as the "newbie"- to reinforce relationships begun in October and at the January NEC, and to begin new ones.
   We covered a number of items at the meeting, filling out the agenda for the Institute from 5 thru 7 November, creating/passing some member-critical motions that will be brought to the floor of the Business Meeting at the Institute. One example is expanding the member status of MCA with regard to new chaplains servinc in the Coast Guard Auxiliary, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and State Guards/State Defense Forces where chaplains for those states meet the same endorsement
standards as the uniformed services and VA chaplains. We also discussed recognizing the enlisted and civilian members of our chaplaincy programs who do so much to shape the success of our chaplains.  

The Rev. Dave DeDedonato was appointed as Vice President to fill the vacancy created when the Rev. Mike Langston moved up to President, and two NEC vacancies and one Finance Committee vacancy were also filled by appointment of our President to serve until the November meeting and elections.
   The Journal was also a major focus of attention, to include not only articles and book reviews, including the option of doing "simple" book reviews, known in some publications under the heading of "Briefly Noted Books" or a similar title.
   Finances also received a thorough review, with a presentation by our Wells Fargo Investment Advisor, Mr. Tom Grimm, Senior Vice President, Investment Officer, who does a remarkable job managing our account.
  We also received an update on the South Carolina State Guard Chaplaincy program - which meets the same standards of federally endorsed chaplaincy - by the Commanding General of the South Carolina State Guard, Major General (SC) Tom Mullikan, who laid out a clear vision for the role chaplains in the State Guard. To signify the importance of the role of chaplaincy in the guard, Gen Mullikan has decided to appoint Mike Langston as his Deputy Commanding General, with the rank of Brigadier General (SC) at a ceremony to be held in December.
   The Professional Military Chaplaincy certification program, in partnership with The Association of Professional Chaplains, continues to attract interest and applications for certifications. Kudos to the Rev. Jan McCormack for bringing this to fruition (and to Jan for also being certified this past Friday as a Full Educator, aka, Supervisor, after 8 years of hard work!).
   Focused, intentional mentoring was also reviewed, and examples of successful mentoring were provided as well. A possible article in the Journal will also be forthcoming.
   It was a very successful and laser-focused meeting that did a remarkable job in covering these critical topics with due diligence and dedicated attention to detail that was quite remarkable.  The meeting itself - and well as the dinner cruise arranged by the son and nephew of one of our own, the Rev. Ken Colton - was outstanding. I am happy to report that none of our members who were Eagles Scouts in their youth had to use their Lifesaving Merit Badge skills as everyone who boarded the boat stayed on the boat for the entire cruise. 
  Two last notes: 1) We have regularly posted each week recently deceased members. There are times, however, when we miss the reports of our members who have died. Please, if you see an obituary of a military or VA chaplain, please email that information - and if possible the link - to me at

Also, as a second point, as we are meeting at the start of the week of the biennial meeting of the the United States Army Chaplain Corps Regimental Association, I would urge those of you are affiliated with the Army to attend the full week's events if possible, and for those who are coming primarily for the Regimental Association meeting, to feel free to contact us and let us know if you can join us for our Awards Dinner on Tuesday evening, especially if you live in the metro DC area.
  And administratively, the final draft notes from last week will be posted with next week's Newsgram, and will be voted on as "final" minutes at our August NEC meeting.

Executive Director
Fr. Razz Waff, DMin, BCC

In Memoriam

Commander, Chaplain Corps, United States Navy, Retired
born December 27, 1956
deceased May 3, 2018
Poquson, VA

People who regularly read Bible say it's better than coffee to jump-start their mornings

The State of the Bible  research survey has been released. Among its findings,  when asked how to better jump-start their mornings 37 percent of all Americans chose coffee, 28 percent chose something sweet, 19 percent chose social media and 16 percent chose the Bible.  

Commissioned by American Bible Society and conducted by Barna Group - the survey also revealed the trends for how often Americans are reading the Bible, their perceptions around the Bible, and how much impact the Bible has on their choices, relationships and lives overall.

The more engaged someone is with the Bible, the more likely he or she is to recognize their need for it on a daily basis, according to the latest State of the Bible research from American Bible Society. Among this group, 61 percent said they must have the Bible as part of their daily routines when given a choice between the Bible, coffee, sweets and social media.

"What many Americans rightly recognize is, that while coffee provides a nice temporary jolt of energy, only the life-changing message of the Bible gives lasting hope and peace," said Roy Peterson, president and CEO of American Bible Society. "The Bible provides the wisdom of the ages for today's fears, challenges and struggles.

The survey also shows that while coffee and sweets offer a bit of daily comfort, they are not alleviating fear in America, with 42 percent of all Americans responding that they are more fearful today than they were in the past. Women (47 percent) and Millennials (49 percent) are more fearful than men and other age groups. But the Bible is clearly making a difference in the lives of people engaged in reading it. Forty-one percent of Americans reported feeling peaceful when reading the Bible and, among those who interact with the Bible most often[ii], 62 percent said their fear level had not increased in the past five years.

The State of the Bible  2018 report contains the findings from a nationwide study commissioned by American Bible Society and conducted by Barna Research (a division of Barna Group). Two research methodologies were used for the study: the first included 1,004 telephone interviews (including cellphone interviews) with adults in all 50 states in the U.S., and the second consisted of 1,063 online surveys using a nationally representative panel. The use of two methodologies provided a larger sample size for key questions and ensured even greater representation among all age groups. The telephone interviews were conducted Jan. 4 - 11, 2018, and included U.S. adults 18 years of age or older. The online surveys were conducted Jan. 9 - Jan. 18, 2018.

And hope is not lost. Some 81 percent of Americans agree they have a great sense of hope for the future. Those who have a higher level of engagement with the Bible are more likely to affirm their hope for the future than those who are less engaged.

For more on the survey research see American Bible Society News -  Coffee or the Bible?

International Military Ethics Symposium 2018

All military chaplains are invited to attend and participate in a unique professional training event: the inaugural International Military Ethics Symposium 2018 (IMES '18). 

This symposium, jointly sponsored by the Office of the Chief of Chaplains and the Royal Army Chaplains Department (UK), will occur at the National Defense University, FT McNair, Washington, DC from 30 JUL - 1 AUG 2018. 

The symposium is open to all US military personnel of any service as well as DoD Civilians, interagency personnel, coalition allied military personnel, and interested university faculty, graduate students, and ethicists. 

You may register by opening the attached "Call for Papers" PDF file and clicking on the registration link at the bottom of the page or use IMES '18 registration link provided below. 

If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to call or write Chaplain Tim Mallard at 703-545-5312 or email
and they will be happy to assist. This  promises to be one of the seminal training events of the year in the profession of arms.

International Military Ethics Conference 2018 Registration Website:

The Military Chaplains Magazine
2018 Themes and Submission Deadlines

Spring Issue - The Intersection of Spiritual and Psychological Care
Articles submission date extended - May 18
Publication June 8
Summer Issue - Chaplains and World War 1
Articles to be submitted by June 30
Publication July 23
Fall Issue - Religious Accommodation in 2018
Articles to be submitted by September 30
Publication September 24
Winter Issue - Chaplaincy and Religion in a Post-Truth World
Articles to be submitted by November 30
Publication December 21

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If you missed the May 9th  edition of the Newsgram  click here
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AND THOSE THEY SERVE: military members, veterans, and their families  at home and around the world

The Military Chaplains Association of the USA
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