Troops Take a Moment to Reconnect; Pray
March 14, 2008
Add Text Here FORT HOOD, Texas - In the hectic fields of battle, Soldiers are often thinking of their buddies on their right and left, hoping that they will be kept out of danger. That mentality doesn't necessarily change when the bullets stop flying.
Soldiers, who recently returned from a 15-month deployment to Iraq, took a moment to pray for their deployed comrades and the friends they've lost at the 1st Cavalry Division Welcome Home Prayer Breakfast at the Fort Hood Conference and Catering Center March 11.
"We are absolutely blessed to be here, to be back home, together again," said Brig. Gen. (P) Vincent K. Brooks, the First Team commanding general who is originally from Alexandria, Va.
Staff Sgt. Susan Ness, a senior paralegal in the division's legal assistance office, also enjoyed the opportunity to reconnect with her fellow Soldiers.
"It is always good to be able to gather with others of faith and share a meal," the Litchfield, Ill., native said. "The bible says wherever two or three are gathered in His name, He is there with them."
The event also gave Soldiers a moment to say thanks to the Lord for being a part of their lives.
For Ness what made the deployment difficult was the separation from her husband, a fellow Soldier, who returned from his deployment just weeks prior to her leaving. She said that God helped her through.
"During our separation, my faith allowed for me to keep going when I did not always feel like it," she said. "God is always there with us, even when those we love can't be."
While the Soldiers savored their buffet style breakfast, Chaplain (Brig. Gen.) Donald L. Rutherford, a Roman Catholic Chaplain from Kinderhood, New York talked to the troops in attendance about integrating that faith and their heart into their leadership style.
"We have heard a great deal about leadership and you live leadership, every one of you are leaders in one way or another," said the 23rd deputy chief of chaplains. "Look at the power of prayer and leaders of prayer in our own lives."
Encouraging troops to look inside themselves and use their hearts in their leadership styles, he cited examples of "true leaders," talking about Mother Theresa and Moses, to name a few.
"Spiritual leadership, or leadership in faith, is similar to military leadership, I truly believe," Rutherford said. "When you think about it, it is stopping the bad guys or maybe, even better, changing the views of the bad guys, and I know it is taking care of Soldiers and taking care of people."
"Every one of you play a great role in the defense of our nation, in your own ways every one of you were great spiritual leaders," he said.