Friday, April 29, 2011

Soldiers Need Heaven to Face Hell

            There are no atheists in fox holes. 


    We all know what that means.


            When faced with the life and death crisis events of the battlefield, the human heart appeals to God for help.


            Now imagine the following:  A brave Marine is hit with an enemy round in Paktya Province in Afghanistan, waiting for reinforcements, alone behind an old horse wagon that offers him temporary protection.


            A Military Chaplain in the field somehow makes his way through the flying bullets to  the side of the seriously wounded American soldier.


            The Marine praises God, out loud, that the Chaplain is there to offer aid and consolation.


            The brave fighter asks the Chaplain if God will forgive his sins.


            The Chaplain replies that there is no God.  In fact, he tells the soldier that he is an "Atheist" Chaplain.


            If you are shocked and mortified by this sad tale, contact your congressman right away.


            The American Armed Forces, according to a recent report out of the Catholic News Agency, are being pressured to supply "Atheist Chaplains" in order to provide equal treatment for non-believers in the military.


            Political correctness runs amok.  Again.


U.S. Military Archbishop Timothy Broglio, a Catholic leader who has celebrated Mass at military bases all over the world, objects. 


            Broglio told the Catholic News Agency that he suspects the effort is just another atheist attack on traditional religion.


            Leaders of this bizarre idea say atheists feel marginalized because traditional chaplains create the presence of religion in the armed forces.


Marginalized?  Wrong word choice.  How about alone. Abandoned.  Despairing.


And not by the military.  Alone and abandoned by their own choice to disregard the obvious fact that we are all created by and depend on God.


I would feel pretty lousy about that if I were an atheist.  Especially in the face of young believers who march into battle knowing that whatever happens,  God has us in the palm of his hand.


So I agree with Bishop Broglio.


We can't let the prideful disregard of our Lord's grace and presence destroy the wonderful chaplain program that has been a central spiritual service to our fighting men and women for the last two hundred years.


Write  and call your congressman.  Atheist Chaplains are not chaplains at all.


They would constitute a sad removal of an element essential to the vast majority of our brave  young soldiers:  Faith.


There are no atheists in foxholes. 


 Deep believers are facing hell on earth to protect us.


They deserve this small connection to heaven that comes from a chaplain system that gives comfort to our armed forces when they need it most.       



David M. Lynch

1 comment:

  1. Hi David, I appreciate this column. I find it laughable that the military would provide atheist "chaplains" whatever they. I don't know if you are a combat veteran or not. I find that quite often many people that have never served in combat seem to be mistaken on what the experience is like. However, as an atheist and a combat veteran of Grenada, Beirut, and Central America, I can assure you there are atheists in foxholes. While I agree with you that the idea of atheist chaplains is ridiculous, I find three errors in your article. First, while there may be attacks on traditional religion, I believe most of those attacks are by believers unhappy with tired, worn out ideologies that are contradictory to Scripture. My atheists friends are only opposed to religion when it is forced on us. For example, when I was offered and acted upon the opportunity to get a vasectomy while in the military I was told I was required to talk to a Catholic chaplain first! Secondly, most atheists I know do not feel "alone ad abandoned by their own choice." Third, I can't imagine any atheist volunteering to join the Chaplain Corps. If you find one, please let me know. I would love to challenge his choice.

    Respectfully yours,

    Eric Stamper