The chaplain assistant military occupational specialty celebrated its 105th anniversary Dec. 28.
At White Sands Missile Range three chaplain assistants work behind the scenes to provide military and civilians with spiritual support.
“The Constitution gives us the right to support religious freedoms to Soldiers, civilians, and members of the Garrison. We have the right to worship,” said Sgt. Sean McCormick, a chaplain assistant at WSMR.
McCormick has been a chaplain assistant for 16 years. He served in Fort Bliss, Texas and Germany before applying his skill set at WSMR.
The WSMR Post Chapel provides Protestant, Catholic, and Gospel services to accommodate the majority of the population on the installation. One of the tasks of the chaplain assistants is to help all individuals receive support no matter what faith they are.
“This is a unique job. By knowing the minority and majority of the population we cannot provide special religious preference to everyone but show where to go to get that,” said McCormick.
Spc. Phillip Sherouse works directly under McCormick. His long list of duties include being the cardholder, opening and locking chapel doors, setting up for Sunday services, and clean up after the service.
Sherouse, who has been a chaplain assistant for almost eight years, is the son of a Lutheran pastor and was familiar with the functions of a chapel before his military career.
“I did it before the Army. When I had a choice of what to do in the Army I chose to do what I knew,” Sherouse said.
The chapel also supports the 2nd Engineer Battalion. Spc. Sharon Pittman has worked as a chaplain assistant for two years. She works closely with the battalion to “update the morality of Soldiers.”