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Navy Chaplain Corps Aligns for the Future

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070817-23
Release Date: 8/17/2007 2:44:00 PM

From Office of Public Affairs, Navy Chief of Chaplains

ARLINGTON, Va. (NNS) -- The Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) and Commandant of the Marine Corps (CMC) have given their blessing to the Chaplain Corps' Strategic Plan.

The Chaplain Corps Strategic Plan is the latest effort to maximize the effectiveness of religious ministry support in the Department of the Navy.

The new strategic plan reflects the vision of the Chaplain Corps: Mission ready Sailors, Marines, and their families, demonstrating spiritual, moral and ethical maturity supported by the innovative delivery of religious ministry and compassionate pastoral care.

In addition, the CNO and CMC validated four Chaplain Corps capabilities: facilitate, provide, care and advise.

Based on the vision and capabilities articulated, the new mission statement reads: “A Chaplain Corps which delivers religious accommodation, care, and advisement, to strengthen faith, values, and virtues, so that Sailors and Marines, and their families may better serve our country.”

The Chaplain Corps developed four guiding principles: promote the spiritual well-being of Sailors, Marines, and their families in accordance with the First Amendment, by respecting and accommodating their diverse religious requirements; demonstrate spiritual and moral integrity; model and teach that every person should be treated with human dignity; and promote professionalism and accountability.

Rear Adm. Robert Burt, the Chief of Chaplains, commissioned Rear Adm. Alan T. Baker, Deputy Chief of Chaplains to lead the strategic planning process.

“The Chaplain Corps is poised to reflect the diversity present in our ranks and among our families," according to Baker. "Special attention will be paid to lessen shortfalls in recruiting, accessions, training, detailing and retention initiatives. An implementation and performance measurement system will be constructed that can quantify value and identify costs."

Baker views the strategic planning process as critical to accomplishing the mission.

“I challenge chaplains to look at the way we envision and practice our ministry within the unique and demanding institutions of the Navy, Marine Corps, and the Coast Guard. We must be the corps that prays for God to guide us every step of the way, as we shape the future Chaplain Corps that will serve the generation of warriors yet unborn, because that’s the legacy we leave,” said Baker.

Chaplains manage and execute command religious programs that accommodate diverse religious requirements. They personally provide worship services, religious and pastoral counsel, scripture study and religious education within their faith traditions.

Chaplains advise leaders at all levels on issues relating to morals and ethics, spiritual well-being, morale and the impact of religion on operations. The Chaplain Corps has been a part of the Navy and Marine Corps team for over 231 years.

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