In 1996 the Catholic Archdiocese for the Military Services sent a letter to its chaplains instructing them to urge their flocks to back the “Project Life Postcard Campaign” in support of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act.
Father Vincent Rigdon wanted to follow this order in rites at Andrews Air Force Base. But there was a problem. Pentagon officials had issued a gag order against chaplains preaching sermons that mentioned this anti-abortion effort.
During World War II, the War Department and the Department of the Navy urged — the operative word is “urged,” not “ordered,” mind you — U.S. military chaplains to encourage soldiers, sailors, airmen, guardsmen and Marines that God was on our side in the global battle against fascists, Nazis and the godless heathens running rampant across Asia and the Pacific. The hymns “Onward, Christian Soldiers” and “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” were sung with fervor at chapel services regardless of denomination.
First, instead of guns, chaplains are armed largely with prayers and comforting words for their compatriots.
And second, they don’t receive the tuition assistance that other members of the National Guard enjoy. That’s because, under the constitutional principle of separation of church and state, Virginia won’t pay for chaplains’ religious education.
Obama Admin Accused of Blocking Chaplain’s ‘Religious Freedom’ Letter, Christian Newshttp://www.christianpost.com/news/obama-admin-accused-of-blocking-chaplains-religious-freedom-letter-68979/
Reports of a rift between the Obama Administration and the Roman Catholic Church over a “contraception mandate” have been swarming the media of late, with some saying the president was even “censoring” military chaplains from speaking out about the issue — but a military source insists the whole affair is overblown.
The controversy surrounds a recent policy change by the Obama Administration that forces institutions affiliated with religious groups to provide coverage for birth control, sterilization and “abortifacients,” all of which the Roman Catholic Church is opposed to. The church’s official position is that the ruling is unconstitutional and infringes on religious rights.