Thursday, July 16, 2009

US National Guard Member Earns Chaplain of Year Award

A great story - the quotes from Chaplain Montgomery speak to the heart of the call of military chaplaincy, as well as to some of its difficulties. A big salute to her from her Canadian colleagues. MP+

By Army Staff Sgt. S. Patrick McCollum
Special to American Forces Press Service

ARLINGTON, Va., July 14, 2009 – Chaplains have myriad reasons for serving their country, but recognition usually isn’t one of them.

“Chaplains are often in the position where we love to serve so much, it’s always a surprise to be rewarded for it,” said Army Chaplain (Capt.) Rebekah Montgomery, who will receive the Chaplain of the Year award from the Military Chaplains Association on July 17.

Montgomery, a Unitarian Universalist chaplain serving with both the Army National Guard Readiness Center here and Maryland’s 58th Troop Command, said she has been a student of religion since high school.

“I was always drawn to how people negotiate their daily lives with the experience of the spiritual,” said Montgomery, a Bethesda, Md., native. “I got so much stimulation out of understanding other faith traditions, and I still do.”

After an 18-month tour in Afghanistan, Montgomery returned to Maryland and took on two jobs. One weekend a month, she is the brigade chaplain for the 58th Troop Command, a job that she said keeps her grounded in the “M-day” unit mentality. An M-day unit one in which troops serve one weekend a month and a two-week annual tour each year.

Read the whole article here.

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Mad Padre

Mad Padre
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