WASHINGTON (April 11, 2013) -- Chaplain (Capt.) Emil J. Kapaun was postumously awarded the Medal of Honor by President Barack Obama at a White House ceremony, April 11, 2013. In a ceremony the following day at the Pentagon, Chaplain Kapaun was inducted into the Pentagon's Hall of Heroes.
Chaplain Kapaun was awarded for his heroism at the Battle of Unsan, November 1-2, 1950, during the Korean War.
Chaplain (Maj. Gen.) Donald Rutherford, U.S. Army Chief of Chaplains, delivered the invocation and benediction at the Medal of Honor ceremony. The full text of Chaplain Rutherford's prayers are given below.
Invocation: Almighty and Eternal God, from whom we come and to whom we belong, this day revives in us memories of a faithful servant and a loyal patriot whose memory is a blessing forever. In his ministry, and especially through the complexity of front-line combat, Chaplain Emil Kapaun contended fearlessly against evil and reverently served freedom's cause, giving of himself unselfishly for the welfare of "his boys."
We are humbled, O God, by the strength and honor of a chaplain who often appeared from nowhere during combat operations and remained only long enough to perform his duties before moving on, caring for souls as the Battle of Unsan raged.
As we bestow our Nation's highest honors upon CH Kapaun, may his legacy nurture our Nation and our Army, and inspire us to serve with steadfast hearts which no unworthy thought can drag downward, unconquered hearts which no tribulation can wear out, and upright hearts which no unworthy purpose may tempt aside.
In your blessed and holy name we pray. Amen.
Benediction: Let us go forth into the world in peace, dedicated to Your service, O God. Let us follow Chaplain Kapaun's example and hold fast to that which is good, render to no person evil for evil, strengthen the faint-hearted, support the weary, encourage the tired, and honor all people. Let us love and serve, and may God's blessing be upon us and remain with us always. Amen.
To read the full story of Chaplain Kapaun's valor and heroism, go to his Medal of Honor page at: http://www.army.mil/medalofhonor/kapaun