REDSTONE ARSENAL, Alabama – Members of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command came together during USASMDC’s Prayer Breakfast at the Summit of Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, July 29.
The Prayer Breakfast began with welcoming remarks by USASMDC’s Command Chaplain (Col.) Mark A. Frederick and an invocation by Redstone Arsenal Garrison Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Charles H. Lahmon.
Events following breakfast included a reading from scripture, a prayer for the nation, songs of praise, and an introduction for guest speaker Lt. Gen. Daniel L. Karbler, USASMDC commanding general.
“The effects of being faith-based is a night and day difference.” Karbler said. “For me, being faith-first is more important than marriage vows or my oath of office. You have to rely on your faith. Faith equals resilience. If you can believe that, and if you can accept that, then you can live that.
“Every week I reach out to touch the cloak,” he added. “I would ask you this, ‘What is the cloak that you reach out to?’ As we leave today, you be the cloak that someone else can reach out to in their time of need.”
Frederick said the command is hosting the prayer breakfast for several reasons, and he believes when a prayer breakfast is conducted in a unit, Soldiers and civilians, consciously or unconsciously, feel the command cares about their spiritual health.
“I have been a chaplain for more than 30 years and have always conducted a prayer breakfast in a garrison setting within a military unit as well as in combat zone," Frederick said. “It has been historically an Army tradition. Throughout the military, the Army emphasizes the mental, physical and spiritual aspect of each individual.
“A prayer breakfast is an avenue to highlight the spiritual aspect of each individual and is a collective opportunity to build a stronger SMDC team and a stronger community of faith,” he added. “Our command team at SMDC desires everyone to be healthy. Spiritual health is important to resiliency and is important to the command.”
Frederick added that the purpose of the prayer breakfast is to remind participants that they live in a free country where they can publicly practice freedom of religion.
“We don’t have to be ashamed of our faith or fear reprisal from any authority,” Frederick said. “During the chaos of our work, a prayer breakfast allows us, with support of our command, to reflect on and value our spiritual heritage and blessings. A prayer breakfast can also encourage our attendees to have hope for the present and future especially during difficult times like these due to the pandemic, personal losses and grief.
“A prayer breakfast places a high value on the power of prayer,” Frederick added. “The end state of a prayer breakfast is to encourage all people of faith to practice the power of prayer.”