Supporting the Chaplaincy2019-09-30T13:26:11-06:00

Supporting The Chaplaincy


Not all chaplains (nor do all Christians) think, believe, or express their Christian faith exactly like you. Yet, are they wrong and you right? Find the central and foundational beliefs about Jesus Christ you share and build on those. As the command religious affairs staff officer for the command and under the commanding officer, the chaplain has the responsibility and resources for religious ministries for all, including Christians. Whether you fully agree with your chaplain, and whether she/he is as gifted for ministry as you would like, in all instances you can support him/her in prayer and encouragement, and in most cases you can use your gifts and experience to assist in the ministry of the chapel in some way.

Scripture references

Study the following biblical references and consider how they address the questions listed below. If using this outline with a Small Group, consider assigning different Scriptures to different individuals and relating them to one or more of the questions. Then scroll down the page to review our recommended resources for the topic of Supporting the Chaplaincy and consider how the various articles or podcasts provide further insights relating to this topic.

Exodus 17:8-16; Exodus 18; Mk 14:32-42; Romans 15:30-32; 2 Corinthians 1:10-11; Philippians 1:19; Ephesians 6:19; Colossians 4:2-4; Philemon 1:22; 2 Thessalonians 3:1-2; Hebrews 13:18-19; Mark 9:38-41; Matthew 17:1-8; Luke 10:38; Mark 3:13-15.


  1. What did Moses need to succeed in this challenge? How can you “hold up arms”? Whose?
  2. What did Jethro observe and advise? Why are “lone ranger” Christians poor leaders?
  3. Who asks prayer for themselves? Do you pray for your chaplain, the command religious program, and the Spirit’s working in your unit personnel and families?
  4. Is the chaplain “different than” you? How? But how are you and he/she “the same”?
  5. Why did Jesus take some key believers and leaders on His Transfiguration?
  6. How did Mary, Martha, and Lazarus support and encourage Jesus (not just vice versa)?
  7. Before Jesus sent out utilized others in ministry, what was established first?

Recommended Resources

Following are a series of carefully selected resources that provide perspectives and experiences of various authors, most having military experience. These articles and podcasts are intended to stimulate further thinking and reflective application for individuals or to act as the basis of discussion in small groups.

What supporting the chaplaincy looks like | Episode 021

CH(COL) Marc Gauthier, USA (Ret.), shares his story of how God called him into the military to serve as a chaplain, how to encourage chaplains outside the Christian faith, a story of what it looks like when a leader integrates his faith and profession, and his thoughts on who the two loneliest people are in the military, and why.

Praying for Chaplains

Here are four ways you can pray over chaplains by praying the prayers of Colossians 1:9-12, Ephesians 1:15-19, and Ephesians 6:19-20.

A Questionable Life

1 Peter 3:15 tells us to always be prepared to give an answer. I call that 'living a questionable life' where you are open to others questioning you.

Additional Resources

OCF offers many extra resources as you continue digging into the subdomain of Supporting the Chaplaincy.

The Chaplaincy

In a combat zone soldiers can rarely say, "Chaplain, you just don't know what I'm going through."

The Chaplain’s Role

Because of the patrol rotations, a chaplain may find himself preaching at multiple services to accommodate his soldiers. This is the life of a field chaplain.

Support Your Chaplain

As a lay-indigenous ministry being conducted by lay military Christians inside the military society, OCF members and chaplains can be great coworkers in kingdom-building within our Armed Forces.

Making the ‘no greater love’ sacrifice

The Four Chaplains, also referred to as the "Immortal Chaplains" or the "Dorchester Chaplains," were four United States Army chaplains who gave their lives to save other civilian and military personnel as the troop ship USAT Dorchester sank on February 3, 1943, during World War II. They helped other soldiers board lifeboats and gave up their own life jackets when the supply ran out.

Conversation With a Chaplain

The chaplaincy is an incredible opportunity to present and represent the claims of Christ, but it is not a calling for the faint hearted. Carrying forward spiritual battle in the midst of physical battle is an extreme challenge.

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