News

Chapel hosts clergy partnership event

Chaplain (Lt. Col.) James Parrish, 55th Wing Chaplain, and David Reeson, Saint Columbkill Parish pastor, discuss religious matters during the 2017 Clergy Partnership Event at the Capehart Chapel here April 6. More than 20 religious leaders from denominations from across the Omaha metro attended this event.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Zachary Hada)

Chaplain (Lt. Col.) James Parrish, 55th Wing Chaplain, and David Reeson, Saint Columbkill Parish pastor, discuss religious matters during the 2017 Clergy Partnership Event at the Capehart Chapel here April 6. More than 20 religious leaders from denominations from across the Omaha metro attended this event. (U.S. Air Force photo by Zachary Hada)

Col. David Berg, 55th Wing vice commander, briefs local community religious leaders as part of the 2017 Clergy Partnership Event at the Capehart Chapel here April 6. The event invited religious leaders from the local community to get to know what the Offutt mission is and to get a better understanding on what Airmen go through on a daily basis. (U.S. Air Force photo by Zachary Hada)

Col. David Berg, 55th Wing vice commander, briefs local community religious leaders as part of the 2017 Clergy Partnership Event at the Capehart Chapel here April 6. The event invited religious leaders from the local community to get to know what the Offutt mission is and to get a better understanding on what Airmen go through on a daily basis. (U.S. Air Force photo by Zachary Hada)

A group of more than 20 ministry leaders from across the Omaha metro area pose for a group photo outside of an RC-135V/W Rivet Joint during the 2017 Clergy Partnership Event here on April 6. The Offutt Chapel hosted the event with a goal of engaging local clergy from various faith groups and traditions in order to provide for the spiritual care of the base’s military members and their families. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kendra Williams)

A group of more than 20 ministry leaders from across the Omaha metro area pose for a group photo outside of an RC-135V/W Rivet Joint during the 2017 Clergy Partnership Event here on April 6. The Offutt Chapel hosted the event with a goal of engaging local clergy from various faith groups and traditions in order to provide for the spiritual care of the base’s military members and their families. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kendra Williams)

OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Nebraska --

The Offutt Chapel hosted a Clergy Partnership Event at Capehart Chapel on April 6.

The event was an opportunity for the Offutt Chapel to engage with local clergy from various faith groups and traditions in order to provide for the spiritual care of the base’s military members and their families.

“We recognize that local clergy play an integral part in helping us achieve our ministry goals,” said Chaplain (1st Lt.) John Green, Offutt Chaplain. “We want to make sure they are aware of our mission and vision as well as the resources we have available to meet the needs of the Airmen and their families who might be attending their houses of worship.”

The group of more than 20 was officially welcomed to Offutt by Col. David Berg, 55th Wing vice commander, and then received a briefing from Chaplain (Lt. Col.) James Parrish, Offutt Chaplain.

“We have a lot of active duty and retirees who attend our services,” said Jonathan Vinter, Overland Hills Church senior pastor. “Being able to attend an event like this is very nice and gives us some good background on how we can better minister to their needs.”

The group also learned about The Connection, Offutt's Airmen Ministry Center located within the base dormitories, as well as had the chance to peruse a number of booths from Offutt’s helping agencies including Mental Health, Military & Family Life Consultants, and Military OneSource.

“I believe faith is what keeps us Airmen resilient and also builds character that will help with the mission,” said Senior Airman Jesse Makowski, a volunteer at The Connections from the 97th Intelligence Squadron. “As an active duty Airman, Buddhist and youth leader, I believe it has made me a better human being, helping me deal with and overcome inter-personal issues.”

The group continued with a driving tour of the installation, including a brief visit to SAC Memorial Chapel where Offutt Chaplain (Capt.) Vincent Shaw pointed out the historic stained glass windows and their significance. The tour concluded with catered lunch and a static tour of an RC-135V/W Rivet Joint aircraft.

“It’s great to hear about the services they provide here,” said Fred Simon, Pilgrim Lutheran Church senior pastor. “We have a lot of people attend our church who are stationed here, so getting the opportunity to come out and see the base is a real treat.”

This was the first Clergy Partnership Event since 2013.  It was received with significant enthusiasm and viewed as a great success by all in attendance.

“Everyone enjoyed their visit and learned a little bit more about the mission here and what our Airmen, Soldiers, Sailors and Marines are doing across the globe,” Shaw said. “By this small glimpse into the military life of those under their care, they are now better equipped to join us in developing spiritually fit Airmen who innovate to execute.”