Army chaplaincy celebrates 235 years
August 5, 2010
FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- Fort Jackson's chaplains ushered in the Army chaplaincy's 235th year during a "birthday party" July 30 at the U.S. Army Chaplain Center and School.
With help from Maj. Gen. James Milano, commanding general of the U.S. Army Basic Combat Training Center of Excellence and Fort Jackson, Chaplain (Col.) David Smartt, commandant, USACHCS, and the USACHCS Command Sgt. Maj. Marylena McCrimmon cut a large birthday cake with a ceremonial saber.
The two youngest USACHCS Soldiers, Pvt. Amber Sherman, 18, an Advanced Individual Training student, and 2nd Lt. Stephanie Christoffels, 23, a chaplain candidate, also joined in cutting the cake.
More than 200 Soldiers and civilian personnel later lined up to enjoy the multiple home-cooked dishes brought in for the potluck-style festivities.
"The most important thing the Army Chaplaincy does is to help insure the free exercise of religion for our deserving Soldiers," said Smartt. "Also, we are there when they or their families need someone to share their deepest pain and joys.
" It is indeed a great privilege to serve as an Army chaplain."
Chaplain (Col.) Christopher Wisdom, deputy commandant, made a similar observation.
"Our core mission is providing for the free exercise of religion. Our core capabilities are to nurture the living, care for the wounded and honor the dead," he said.
Wisdom added, "This core mission and these core capabilities enable chaplains and chaplain assistants to make a unique contribution as military personnel to the soul care of our Soldiers and the faith formation of their families."