Friday, September 18, 2009

Once upon a time.... pt. 3


Upon my return home, I was upbraided once again for "jumping the Chain [of Command]," but by that point, it was old-hat. Not long after my return, I went on Temporary Duty to a two-week course in Texas, and life returned to normal.

I went to Chaplain School shortly thereafter, and less than a month after those 90 days (of hell) were over I learned that my name was on the top of the list of Chaplains from my State to go to Iraq.

Over a year ago I alluded to the fact that I had initially been slated to go to what I call the "Readers' Digest" training course for Iraq, but someone had a change of heart and decided to send me to Summer Camp - South instead.

Gak.

This was not good news for Tim.

I'd not left Summer Camp - South on particularly good terms the year before (and it was only slightly more than a year since all that transpired).

Sigh.

About ten days before I was to report in, I was on the phone with someone there, and when I mentioned that I'd been there before and what had happened, he audibly caught his breath and said, "So *you're* the one!"

Great.

This was off to a good start, I thought.

Once on the ground again at Summer Camp - South, each of the Chaplains assigned to the place said the exact same thing to me.

Even better.

What I'd not realized in the year that had passed is that the person ultimately responsible for the training program at Summer Camp - South (and many other posts, as it turns out) had heard about my shenanigans, and before he retired, put out a directive that Soldiers be given a three-hour block of time once per week, during which no training was to go on so they could attend Services if they wished.

Upon being told of this fact, I was then upbraided by the person who told me this for "jumping the Chain."

The more things change, the more they stay the same, I guess!

Blessings and peace to one and all,

Fr. Tim, SJ

4 comments:

Mary Coady said...

Way to go, Tim!

MaryShields said...

We who have many friends hanging out in 12-Step fellowships "have a new Employer." Not to mention that ordained Chaplins have that same Employer. You carried out His assignment in an excellent manner, Tim. No one ever said that working for Him would be easy and painless, though it is True! Your commission is to serve the Soldiers, and that you did! Bless you, dear friend. Mary Coady said it quickly. I simply needed to vent a little!!

Kanani said...

Sounds like lotsa people got their knickers in a knot. Glad the net result was that the soldiers can now go and worship and not be afraid of missing training.

Sorry, but what kind of leadership would pile drive morale, confidence and well being out of the people they're charged with training?

"old dog" said...

Thank you, Sir, for caring about the soldiers. The brass may not have liked it, but you did the "right" thing.

 
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