Members of the U.S. Army Chaplain Corps from the Area II footprint all came together to celebrate the 242nd anniversary of the corps with a summer picnic and fellowship time, July 28 at the U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan, South Post Chapel.
The Army Chaplain Corps, officially established in 1775, embodies Army commissioned officers serving as military chaplains and enlisted Soldiers serving as chaplain assistants. The Chaplin Corps are obliged to provide the best religious services, moral, and spiritual support to the community, whether in peace time or war. When soldiers are performing their mission or deployed, the Chaplain Corps are the ones known for supporting and lifting up the Soldiers and their families.
"As long as there have been Soldiers in America, there have been Army Chaplains," Said Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Joseph H. Ko from 1st Signal Brigade. "Since the War for Independence, to the most recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, members of the Chaplain Corps have served their fellow Soldiers with bravery and dignity. Nearly 400 Army Chaplains and Chaplain Assistants have been among those who made the ultimate sacrificing by laying down their lives in battle."
Sometimes, chaplains and their assistants are unseen when walking among the Soldiers in formation and out in the field. But they offer services that can be significant for those they work beside.
"Chaplain Crops provide support for people to exercise their own faith. What we do is take care, nurture and honor military members and their families," Said Ko. "Moreover, also those deployed in the field. Today we gather to celebrate 242nd anniversary of the Chaplain corps and remember who we are out of this celebration. It is time for us to remind ourselves the importance of our role through taking time to go back to our core value. It is a true honor and privilege to serve for those in the same uniform as ours, willing to die to protect our country and people."
But the festivities were not only limited to chaplains, Service members from the garrison also had the opportunity to take part in the lunch as guests of the organization.
"It was a great lunch and good barbecue," said Cpl. Kim, Min Gyu, Republic of Korea Support Office. "I didn't know chaplains actually went to war, I thought they just stayed in the chapel and prayed for the Soldier's victory."
For one particular soldiers, the opportunity to represent the Chaplains Corps means something extra special to him.
"To me Chaplain Corps mean resiliency, spiritual support and mainly happiness", Said Cpl. Marcus K. Young, USAG Yongsan chaplain assistant. "The most positive thing about the Chaplain corps is that it brings soldiers together to make them more of a family and also it helps raise awareness of spiritual awareness."