Good Morning everyone, I am not in contact with you, like I have read, & heard of other being a little rude. I first want to say to you that, I am a vet of the US Army, I am also an X 71M, which is a Chaplain Asst. The time of my adventure in the Military I had the pleasure of working with many denominational Chaplains, and I have to say that, they are all different. I had Chaplains that I have questioned within myself where he was Spiritually, Just question, not judge. I had Chaplains that were really Laid back, & pretty cool, then I had some that I personally thought was satan in disquise, They were all different. I will say this to you Mikey, I never had one of them approach me, nor any other soldier in uniform about Jesus, so I am surprised to hear that you have laid down some rules, when In my opinion, was not needed. Every Chaplain I worked along side only counseled those Troops that either wanted couselling, or ordered to go a talk to a Chaplain, and when that happened, it was not Spiritual, it was more listening on the Chaplain’s part. I also had the soldiers come in from off the streets just to talk, other than that, the soldiers were told of the different programs that they were invited to, and NEVER ordered to attend, they were always a volunteer setting, then of course the Chaplains regular Sunday Service that was part of their normal duty, unless of course the Chaplain was Jewish, and that was who I normally serviced on Friday’s. So to hear about all these threats that I have been hearing about that was coming from Generals, or Jr. Officers, surprised the hades out of me. I also must say that, at one time my thoughts came to me as, why in hades are all these athiest always coming out complaining about something they don’t believe in. That has alway’s puzzeled me to no end. So Mikey, if there is anything I can help you with, then let me know, I caan sure tell you why they chaptered 13 me out of the Military, that in it’s self was a big surprise for me, e angry, but I chosed to forgive, I can’ beat Goliath, anyway. Have a Marvelous day, you and the family.
Good evening (name withheld),
Mikey’s asked me to respond on behalf of MRFF, as he’s quite busy at the moment.
As a chaplains assistant, I’m confident that you’re telling the truth when you say that no one approached you to spread the word of their version of the inerrant truth. What motivation would someone have to convert a person who is already on board? None.
I appreciate that you acknowledge that soldiers are often ordered to see chaplains. This is an unlawful order, as no one in the military can be required to seek religious counsel. The law aside, there is a 100% probability that you have not been present at every coerced meeting between a chaplain and a soldier. You don’t and can’t know what goes on behind those closed doors around the world. I can tell you from my personal experience (having been given that particular unlawful order 3 times) that chaplains will inform non-religious soldiers that their lives would be better if they would give themselves over to Jesus, that a little faith is what’s really important during hard times, and all other manner of condescending, debasing nonsense.
The rules that we invoke already exist, and have existed for ages. All we do at MRFF is bring attention to the myriad instances of abuse of authority by those wishing to win converts for their religion. We have never laid down any rules. We only step in when our military’s leaders fail.
You’re concern about atheists complaining is silly. It isn’t atheists that are doing the complaining. 96% of our clients are Christian. Most of them are from some denomination that their chain of command does not approve of, and face harassment in the workplace for not converting to dominionism. Others are told they aren’t living christian enough lives, or that if they’d go to religious services with their chain of command more often maybe their careers could be accelerated (alternatively held back if they refuse). So no, it isn’t atheists that are causing all of the noise you’ve seen in the news recently.
I hope this clears things up for you, and I’m sorry to hear about your chapter 13. Seems like you were fond of the work you were doing.
Blake A. Page
Military Religious Freedom Foundation
Special Assistant to the President
Director of West Point Affairs.