By Maj. Matthew DevivoApril 8, 2013
RALEIGH, N.C. - Col. Mike Lembke, chaplain, from U.S. Forces Command at Fort Bragg, N.C. (FORSCOM) visited the North Carolina National Guard Joint Force Headquarters this month.
He was hosted by NCNG chaplains, Army Majs., Steven King and Jonathan Heitman, who gave Lembke a tour of the new 237,000 square foot complex, which also shares space with various state agencies including; North Carolina Division of Emergency Management, communications offices for the State Highway Patrol and the Department of Transportation.
This shared facility allows for close coordination and communication between critical civilian emergency management departments and the NCNG during all types of events that affect our state.
The main topic of discussion between the chaplains was centered on what the North Carolina Guard and active duty Army components can accomplish cooperatively in the coming future with limited training resources and other budgetary constraints.
"Let's move from what we can't do together to what we can do together, even if it is just one or two things," said Lembke in the discussion between chaplains.
NCNG's fulltime support chaplain, Maj. Stephen King, spoke highly of the day's interaction.
"Collaborating together as active duty and Army National Guard chaplains proved extremely beneficial in examining where we are alike, rather than focusing on our differences," said King. "We understand that active duty and National Guard operate differently, but we may find some new ways to mutually benefit one another."
The primary mission of the military chaplain is to perform or provide unit based religious support, ensuring the free exercise of religion is granted to all, regardless of their faith. North Carolina National Guard has 19 Army chaplains supporting the almost 12,000 soldiers and airmen of the North Carolina National Guard.
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