The Voice for Chaplaincy - Chartered by Congress - Serving Since 1925
Weekly Newsgram - August 29th 2018

Liberty University's 
Civil War Chaplain Museum 
adds African American exhibit


Liberty University's National Civil War Chaplains Museum has added a new exhibit.

It highlights the important role black chaplains played during the war.

The exhibit shows photos of the 18 African American Chaplains from both the Union and the Confederacy.

The project took about two years to put together.

Four photos of Union Chaplains are still missing. "We really thank the people who have made things available to us. So we're really hoping at some point and time of some of these photographs of chaplains whom we don't have maybe they're out there in someone's attack, someone's closet, someone's book and we can have access to them and share them with the public," said Kenny Rowlette, the museum's director.

The museum's Director says they're the only Chaplain museum to highlight African-American chaplains.

Executive Director  Notes

   This has been an absolutely great week. It started with a great learning opportunity for me and ended the same way. Wish we could all have such weeks on a regular basis. 

    I spent last week in Anaheim at the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) national conference getting smart on CAP chaplaincy. Many thanks to the gracious hospitality of the CAP Chief of Chaplains, CH, Col, Charlie Sattgast who invited me to attend. Wednesday was spent with Charlie and his leadership team, and was a great immersion process as they reviewed the past year's events and milestones and looked at the "way ahead".  

   I cannot think of a better learning lab. The breadth, depth and scope of CAP chaplaincy is absolutely staggering. While I am tickled to be a simple CAP Senior Member (adult who is 21 or older, not necessarily a statement about my being chronologically enriched), that day was truly an eye-opening experience. The rest of the week was spent meeting the line chaplains in the states (or Wings, in CAP parlance) who translate theory into practice with the cadets, their families and the seniors. This also gave me the opportunity to meet the CAP selectee who is the 2018 Distinguished Chaplain, CH, LtCol, Tim Miner.

   On Monday I had the opportunity to meet with Ed Junod, the President of Vet to Vet Tennessee and Chairman of the Knoxville Regional Veterans Mental Health Council. We also met with Bill Richards, the Chairman of the Veteran Suicide Prevention Committee and a member of the Tennessee Women Veterans Committee. Both of these men have been significant key figures in our MCA ministry,  Veteran Military Friendly Congregations ( 

    In meeting with them I was able to get a better sense of how congregations linked to the ministry are able to not only welcome serving troops - active, reserve and guard - veterans, and their families, but also be a springboard to such things as locations for veterans courts, access points to healthcare with Veterans Affairs, and other services. 

   Interestingly enough, when I provided an update to the CAP chaplains at their conference, I mentioned the VMFC program and had a number of them individually come up to me during the conference to find out more about the program. As pastors, they wondered how their congregations could be involved in the program, which certainly bodes well for getting the word out about the VMFC program.

    And on a very positive closing note for this week's column, for those of you are waiting for the next Military Chaplain Journal, our Communications Director, Chaplain Lyman Smith, Captain, US Navy (Retired), and I are reviewing the final drafts and that should be getting published very shortly.

   As always, thank you for all that each of you do daily for those who currently serve or have served, the call of the Nation. It is greatly appreciated and not taken for granted.

Fr. Razz Waff, DMin, BCC

Southern Baptist Convention chaplain and Army Religious Affairs Specialist cleared of discrimination charge

from Black Christian News Network

The U.S. Army has cleared a chaplain and his assistant of "dereliction of duty" charges for rescheduling a marriage retreat because of the late addition of a same-sex couple.

On Friday (August 24), the Army announced that it has tossed out all recommended charges against Chaplain Scott Squires and Chaplain Assistant Staff Sgt. Kacie Griffin serving at Fort Bragg in North Carolina, who faced career-threatening discipline because Squires followed the Southern Baptist Convention's guidelines on marriage.

"I look forward to being able to focus on continuing my career serving my fellow soldiers," Squires said in a statement Friday.

As previously reported, the heart of the issue revolves around Squires' response to a lesbian soldier who wanted to participate in an Army-sponsored marriage retreat that Squires was conducting on Feb. 9-11 of this year.

Squires was accused of initially telling the soldier that she could not participate because his certification with the North American Mission Board prevented chaplains from participating in marriage retreats with same-sex couples. He also told her that she would be informed of the next time another retreat is available.

After deliberation with superiors, it was determined that the lesbian couple could sign up for the retreat and another chaplain would host it in Squires' place. However, another chaplain was not available on the weekend of Feb. 9-11 and the retreat was rescheduled to Feb. 23-25.

Squires' lawyers with the First Liberty Institute argued that Squires followed the Defense Department's regulations that require chaplains to follow the tenets of their endorsing denomination.

An Army investigator under the command of Major General Sonntag accused Squires of discriminating against the lesbian soldier and recommended that he be charged with dereliction of duty because he failed to notify his technical chain of command about a soldier in need of services that he could not provide.

Chaplain honored for 50 years in Civil Air Patrol

Editorial Intern
Updated: Aug. 26, 2018, 11 a.m.
   During his weekly sermon on Sunday, July 15, at Hopewell United Methodist Church, Ch. Lt. Col. Gene Brown was recognized for more than 50 years of service in the Georgia wing of the Civil Air Patrol.

   In addition to serving as the pastor of both Hopewell United Methodist Church in Cumming and Salem United Methodist Church in Dawsonville, Brown, 89, has maintained his membership in the Civil Air Patrol, the U.S. Air Force Auxiliary volunteer program.

   Brown joined the Civil Air Patrol on May 28, 1958, at 28 years old. He became a flight instructor and earned a qualification allowing him to participate in search and rescue missions commissioned by the U.S. Air Force. He is credited with locating two plane crash sites during a search and rescue mission with CAP. Though Brown is a volunteer, he is held to the same standards as any U.S. Air Force pilot.

   Brown has committed his life to the gospels and a large portion of his time to the Civil Air Patrol Auxiliary. Brown is a man who has proven himself in the air and in the church.

   To this day, Brown believes that he lives by this in his work as pastor of Hopewell UMC and Salem UMC every Sunday morning, his continuous aviation instruction for his students and his conviction for aiding others and the world around him.

   "Everyone has potential," Brown said. "To see someone's life fully turned around for the better is the most fulfilling achievement I could ever witness."

The Military Chaplains Magazine
2018 Themes and Submission Deadlines
Fall Issue - Religious Accommodation in 2018
Articles to be submitted by August 31
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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