U.S. Army tries to stop Priests from reading at the pulpit
I do not condone what happened at all, but I think I can provide a different "slant" as to why this happened.

For those of you who may not have served (and I don't mean that to sound condescending). obedience is very much stressed in the Army (can't speak for the other branches). They beat it into your head; it doesn't matter if you like the President, soldiers have to be willing to obey his orders without hesitation. So anything that can remotely appear to be a call to defy the president, or anyone in your chain of command for that matter, is quickly squashed.

Additionally, I can tell you that the Army is very sensitive to the religious needs of its soldiers. Even in basic training, religion was a priority. I was not a Catholic when I was in the Army, but I remember going to church on Sundays (while I was in basic) just so that I could get away from the drill sergeants. It was like the only power you had over drill sergeants; they knew that if they prevented you from attending religious services, they would get nailed. Churches and chaplains are everywhere soldiers are, and if a soldier wants to go to Mass, no one's going to stop him (unless he has an absolutely important mission to go on, and even then they will make sure he can go once he or she has completed their mission). One of the first training sessions I received when I became a non-commissioned officer was religious sensitivity training. So the Army does not like to get in the way of religion.

Is it suspect that Secretary McHugh altered the letter? Yes. But I would bet money that had the letter been read as written, some officer or NCO would have reported it anyways (even Catholic ones sitting in the pews). In their minds, it's all about combat readiness.

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Re: U.S. Army tries to stop Priests from reading at the pulpit - by damooster - 02-04-2012, 02:30 AM

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