News: Iron Brigade keeps faith
Story by Sgt. 1st Class Lori Kuczmanski
New Mexico - Capt. Christopher Adunchezor, chaplain, traveled to the field to serve soldiers of 1st Battalion, 35th Armor Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division for Catholic mass on Monday.
The battalion, along with the brigade, is in the field for five weeks for Network Integration Evaluation 13.1.
Religious services for military personnel date back to 1775 and the tradition continues today. Military chaplains normally represent a religion or faith group but work with military personnel of all faiths. Chaplains provide services to all denominations.
“It is my duty as a chaplain to serve soldiers in the field, or wherever they may be, and to restore their faith and to deliver the message of God,” said Adunchezor.
Adunchezor carefully prepared the table into a makeshift altar in preparation for Catholic mass for attending soldiers.
As Adunchezor delivered the sermon, soldiers were focused on the deliverance of the message.
Pvt. Erik Allen, a medic with 1st Battalion, 35th Armor Regiment, 2nd BTC, 1st AD, has been in the army eight months and this was his first time attending religious services in the field. Due to the fast-paced schedule of NIE due to missions and training, Allen was grateful the chaplain staff coordinated services in the field.
“I think it’s great that our chaplains can come out to us because we are in the field,” said Allen. “It’s really helpful because yesterday was very stressful and I found this has really relaxed me … It’s a couple minutes out of my day to have time to myself and with God and restore my belief.”
The NIE mission consists of more than 3,000 soldiers within the brigade, and various types of vehicles and systems being evaluated and by having religious services provided to the soldiers, it helps soldiers restore their faith to continue the dynamic mission.