Saturday, July 21, 2007

The Chalice is now at the Army Chaplain's School!

Hey fellow Military UU's!

There is a formal article about this over at the website, but I thought I would share a few pictures with you of the recent endorser visit to the U.S. Army Chaplain Center and School by Beth Miller and Lisa Presley, the UUA Director of Ministry and Professional Leadership and the Chair of the Committee on Military Ministry. George Tyger and I are here at Ft. Jackson as students at the Chaplain Basic Officer Leader Course, and Vernon Chandler was here for a few weeks earlier this month.

Here are a few pictures!

Lisa Presley, Vernon Chandler, Beth Miller, CH (Col) David Kenehan are along the top from left to right, and George Tyger (left) and me (David Pyle) (right) are kneeling on the bottom.

Vernon, George and I helped hang the banner, and then we got this picture taken together. Dont know for certain, but this may be the largest number of Military Chaplains from the Unitarian Universalist faith ever photographed together.

This picture was taken at the Prayer Breakfast that George was in charge of organizing, and I prepared the briefings on as a class project. There are currently over 130 students at the Chaplains Basic Course, but only two of us are Unitarian Universalists... and as near as we can figure having two is a record... So it was a great time for Beth and Lisa to visit, especially with Vernon being here for his retirement ceremony after 32 years in the Army... Thanks Vernon, for paving the way, and George and I are proud to relieve you...

Though he's not a UU, I just wanted to share this moment. During the prayer breakfast there was a Buddhist prayer in Pali by the first ever Buddhist U.S. Army Chaplaincy Candidate, 2LT Somya Malasri. He and I sat Buddhist meditation together in the mornings.

To show its not all classroom and prayer breakfasts here, here I am giving a briefing for an obstacle course we are about to go run. Chaplains dont do any weapons training, but we do do alot of the other kinds of tactical training.

Like this (I'm on the back side of the wall)

And this (yep, that's me. the later is about 100ft tall or so).

And this (that's me too.... I couldnt find any that had been taken of George on the confidence course, but he did everything that I did... we all did.
It is a wonderful experience being one of the few Chaplains and Chaplain Candidates here of liberal faith. Our voice is desperately needed in the Chaplain's corps, so that we can continue to support the freedom of religous expression in the Army.
So, from the Chaplain's School at Ft. Jackson, George and I send a loud "HOOAH" out to all of you, as well as a loud Amen and Namaste!
Yours in Faith,
David Pyle
2LT, USAR Chaplaincy Candidate