Growing Through Adversity

Click here to view Growing Through Adversity Video

”Growing Through Adversity” is a documentary in which several couples share their personal, often challenging, marriage experiences, to provide encouragement to others who want to build strong marriages. U.S. Army Chaplain Corps and Army Leaders, as well as other special guests, open up their lives to the audience, to share a path forward during these difficult times.

Special guests in the film include Tim and Demi Tebow, Tony Dungy, James Woods, Blair Underwood, Johnny Gill, Vanna White, Sam Elliott, Jeff Daniels, and Drew Carey.

The film is designed to encourage the Army’s Soldiers and their Families, by creating spaces where couples are encouraged to grow stronger together

C19 Prison Ministry Impact: Change of Pace and Venue

By Joel Van Sant, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Fort Dix, NJ

Over the past 6 months, I have experienced a lot of change at Fort Dix. At the beginning of the year, I was able to start and lead a program that helped inmates work through the spiritual struggle of pornography addiction. After advertising the class, we had over 70 inmates sign-up and participate. Unfortunately, a few weeks after starting the class, we had to temporarily stop the class due to Covid-19.

Chaplain Joel Van Sant

The past few months have had a different change of pace. Up until March of 2020, the chaplaincy department had been running at top speed. All of that slowed down in the middle of March. As the corona virus began to spread in our area, it was in the best interest of the inmates and employees to move to a modified movement schedule. During these months, we have not had any inmates in our chapel. Instead, we have had the opportunity to go to the housing units. This has been an unforeseen blessing. When the chapel was open, we were almost always doing ministry within the four walls of the chapel. Now we have opportunity to be a spiritual light in the housing units. While we are having an impact on the inmates, we are also able to invest and provide a sense of hope and peace to the officers in the units. It has been amazing to see how a dark situation can provide an avenue for God to work in the hearts of those on this compound.

One of the greatest blessings I have experienced over the past six months was Resurrection Sunday. As chaplains, we have not led any services in the units due to the CDC guidelines. Even though we were not leading services in the units, it was encouraging to hear that the inmates still observed and celebrated Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday in their respective housing units. I was so grateful to hear the news that the inmates were able to celebrate such a special time of year, despite the circumstances.

Though the ministry has changed over the past few months, I have had to remain flexible and realize that my ministry is truly a ministry of service. I continue to bring necessary items from the chapel to the housing units and cannot help but think of the words of Christ, “the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve.”

Please Pray:

I encourage you to keep our chaplains in prayer. During this pandemic, our style of ministry has changed from preaching and teaching to more one-on-one interactions. This has been a difficult transition for some of our chaplains.

Also, pray for our staff as they continue to provide safety and security during a very difficult time.

Finally, pray for our inmates who have struggled to be away from family during such a dark time in our world. The days get very monotonous for them.


Join us in praying for Chaplain Van Sant and our 200 other chaplains facing the challenges of the COVID19 pandemic. Despite the obstacles, Spirit-led creativity and persistence is yielding positive results around the world.

For more stories by and about our chaplains, visit us a www.cbamerica.org/chaplaincy. For information of endorsement for chaplaincy, email Director Randy Brandy at chapbrandt@cbamerica.org.

CB Chaplains Team Up to Provide Ministry in Middle East

By Chaplain Tim Miller, New York Army National Guard, Middle East

Chaplain Tim Miller

This quarter I was able to answer the call from CH (MAJ) Adam Kawaguchi to help provide religious support to U.S. Military forces in Jordan. Adam has become a good friend and co-laborer. Between the two of us and our NCO’s we have been able to provide a good amount of religious support to those in need. This move has resulted in a significant increase in worship services provided, which for me has been exciting!

COVID-19 has put a serious restraint on many religious services, but thankfully my Division has been looking for opportunity to overcome these obstacles. We have resorted to Spiritual ruck marches and many religious field services. Our Public Affairs Officer did an article on our Task Force’s response during this time period.

https://www.usarcent.army.mil/News/Article/2219690/spartan-chaplains-maintain-morale-and-faith-in-spite-of-covid-19/ Both CH (CPT) Matt Granahan and I are mentioned in this article, along with my Division chaplain.

Being over 60% complete with this mission has been an encouragement. I look forward to what else God has for my Chaplain Section, and the rest of my Division.

Prayer Concerns:

  • The continued safety of the 42nd Infantry Division and our loved ones back home.
  • Pray or my return to NY and if the Lord will’s my continuation of AGR orders, or transition to federal technician status as a full-time support Chaplain.
  • Prayers for fellow CB chaplains, CH (MAJ) Adam Kawaguchi, and CH (CPT) Matt Granahan. They have both been great friends and co-laborers in the Lord. I pray they return to their loved ones safe and sound.

Join us in praying for Chaplains Miller, Kawaguchi, Granahan stationed in the Middle East and our 200 other chaplains facing the challenges of the COVID19 pandemic. Despite the obstacles, Spirit-led creativity and persistence is yielding positive results around the world.

For more stories by and about our chaplains, visit us a www.cbamerica.org/chaplaincy. For information of endorsement for chaplaincy, email Director Randy Brandy at chapbrandt@cbamerica.org.

Living With the End in View: A Timely Book for the Miramar Brig

By Chaplain Dan Klender, USN, Miramar Marine Corps Naval Air Station

While transiting back to the states from the British Indian Ocean Territories in October 2018, I spent ten days in Yokosuka, Japan. While there, I was able to fellowship with one of our great Navy chaplains, Jonathan Stephens, and his lovely family. After an incredibly busy tour at Diego Garcia, I finally had some free time to resume writing a book I had started several months earlier, Living With the End in View: Escaping the Tyranny of the Here and Now

This work is not about the signs of the times, or the apocalypse, but eternal rewards. Unbeknownst to all of us, the COVID pandemic invaded our lives in early 2020.  

As the chaplain for at Navy Consolidated Brig Miramar, California, I began to reflect on how this book might encourage our prisoner population and others. As you might imagine, prisoners often find themselves mired in the swamp of despair. 

While they eagerly anticipate the day of their release, they fear considerable challenges of employment, re-assimilation into society, family reintegration, and social ostracization. 

I began to wonder how the book might offer hope to this segment of the body of Christ. I quickly made several copies available through the chapel library. 

The feedback I received from many of the prisoners reading the book was positive.  

C.S. Lewis asserted, “God is not as interested in what a man is currently, but what he is becoming.” This is a quote I often cite to the men and women at the BRIG. Erstwhile United States Senate chaplain, Peter Marshall, was surely correct while rhapsodizing, “It is better to fail in a cause that will ultimately succeed than to succeed in a cause that will ultimately fail.”  

Below is an excerpt from Living With the End in View: Escaping the Tyranny of the Here and Now.

What Are You Living For? 

Corporal Jason Dunham was born on November 10th, the Marine Corps’ birthday. As a recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, Dunham was born to be a Marine. What did Corporal Dunham do to merit the U.S. military’s most distinguished award? He had been leading a fire team of Marines who were ambushed. He quickly found himself locked in hand-to-hand combat with an insurgent. As an Iraqi militant had seized Dunham by the neck, he shouted to team members, “Watch out he has a grenade in his hand!” At which point the insurgent tossed the grenade into the group of Marines after releasing his grip from Dunham. This brave young Marine without a seconds’ hesitation thrust his Kevlar (helmet) and body over the grenade to shield his fellow Marines from the impact. 

Dunham was mortally wounded, dying eight days later at Bethesda Naval Medical Center. For his heroism, he was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor and had a U.S. Destroyer, the Jason Dunham named for him.  

The pastor officiating at his memorial service remarked: “Jason died as he lived, caring more about others than himself.”    

The selfless heroics of this dauntless Marine rise out of a warriors’ mentality that greets death with a wink and a nod. Such warriors, much like America’s founding fathers, “mutually pledge to each other their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.” After hugging their family members before deployment, Navy Seals, Army Rangers, and Special Operations Marines embrace the sobering prospect that it may be their final farewell. In brief, they live with the end in view.  


Once again, a CBAmerica chaplain publishes a timely book on a relevant topic. Published by Covenant Books on May 6th, 2020, Chaplain Dan Klender’s work can be purchased on Amazon and wherever good books are sold.

For more stories by and about CBAmerica chaplaincies, visit www.cbamerica.org/chaplaincy. To inquire about endorsement for chaplaincy, email Randy Brandt at chapbrandt@cbamerica.org.

Pandemic Ministry: Air Force Chaplains baptize and disciple despite challenges

By Chaplain Steve Kim, USAF, Sheppard AFB, TX

Greetings Sir/Gentlemen,

I hope you had a wonderful 4th of July!!!

The base commander had a fireworks show on base where we could see it from our driveway (on base) – it was great!!

My Wing (senior supervisory) Chaplain retired – it was tough to see him go — he was prior enlisted and served for 36 years!!  My immediate supervisor is transferring to a new location – and it is also tough to see him go.  He has been a great mentor and friend. It is always so tough to see good people leave and to let them go. 

Big praise – I was ranked #2 of 8 chaplains with a recommendation to attend Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) training in the future.  I’m very blessed and humbled by that.  I hope to attend CPE in the future. 

Here are some pictures from this quarter’s baptisms (April – June).  It was wonderful to have the opportunity to baptize an Airman on Easter Sunday and the Sunday afterwards.  Two Airmen are following their call to serve as a military chaplain (and one of the Airmen was my Chaplain Assistant):

My supervisor (Protestant Chaplain) and I had the privilege to baptize these great Airmen during covid-19 – what a blessing!! 

My Chaplain Assistant / Religious Affairs Airman is standing right next to me – he was born in Ghana and he is now a US citizen – his dad is also a Pastor!! Pastor’s kids unite!- lol!!

I pray you & your family are doing well!

Thank you for your prayers and support.

Many Blessings,
Steve

Steve Kim, 1st Lt, USAF
Chaplain (Active Duty)
Sheppard AFB, TX