Defense and service officials aim to help troops and families adjust to being uprooted every few years to move to a new community. Many spiritual, legal, financial, employment and other resources are available to help military personnel and their families round out their lives.
Military chaplains are clergy, endorsed by national religious groups, who are qualified to serve as officers on active duty.
Chaplains can perform the same services as civilian ministers — baptisms, weddings, bar mitzvahs — but they also often deploy with the troops. They conduct religious services, offer instruction and counseling, and minister to those of other faiths as well.
As senior members of the commander’s staff, chaplains influence nonspiritual matters affecting morale and welfare, morals, ethics and quality of life. They are obligated to hold in confidence any disclosures service members and their families make in counseling.