Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Chaplains Unconcerned About DADT Repeal

The Christian Post has a brief report on evangelical chaplains who, despite predictions of apocalypse from some of their duller brethren, are unconcerned about the repeal of DADT because — surprise — they’ve been counseling gay soldiers all along:

As the Department of Defense transitions to an open military, active duty chaplains reported that they have long been counseling homosexual soldiers.

Army Chaplain Lt. Col. Carleton Birch said Wednesday that chaplains already have experience in counseling homosexual soldiers and will likely be able to adjust easily to an openly homosexual military.

“I’ve counseled homosexual soldiers when if I told anyone else that, they would get kicked out,” shared Birch, an evangelical.


And he doesn’t think much will change:

When asked if chaplains would be limited in their ability to serve soldiers following the “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal, he said that no changes were necessary to protect chaplains’ rights.

He maintained, “We’ve always been able to preach and teach” and anticipate little change in the future.

He’s not alone:

Lt. Col. Lisa H. Tice, a Reformed chaplain who serves in the personnel, budget and readiness division of the Air Force Office of the Chief of Chaplains, said that Tier 1, the first phase of the military training, is geared towards chaplains.

Tice said of counseling gays, “We don’t see this as a big deal.”

Navy Chaplain Capt. John H. Lea III said the trainings will be face-to-face seminars focused on situations and scenarios. According to Lea, who has been selected to conduct the trainings in his branch, the navy has not begun its trainings.

The Air Force, meanwhile, has begun its trainings. The trainings, according to Tice, are set up as a slideshow. Tice anticipates that there will be little conflict between chaplains and their beliefs.

“Ministering is about providing or providing for. I cannot minister to someone who is Muslim because that is not my faith. But I can provide for him [someone else who can minister to him in his faith.] This will be a ‘providing/providing for’ issue,” expressed Tice.

She said that no air force chaplains have left the military over the DADT repeal.

I’m quite sure that the negative reaction of a chaplain to the repeal of DADT increases in direct proportion to how bad they are at being chaplains.