NAVSTA Pearl Harbor's Chaplain Department Provides Top-Notch Support

Story Number: NNS090624-06Release Date: 6/24/2009 1:21:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Robert Stirrup, Commander, Navy Region Hawai’i Public Affairs

PEARL HARBOR (NNS) -- Naval Station (NAVSTA) Pearl Harbor's chaplain department provides various religious services and support programs attended by more than 1,000 Hawaii-based service members and dependents weekly, along with conducting weddings, baptisms and funerals.

"Our goal is to offer the best possible support to every servicemember and their family," said Cmdr. Timothy Koester, command chaplain for NAVSTA Pearl Harbor. "If personnel are interested in services not provided at Pearl Harbor, we will gladly accommodate them by referring them to a service they desire."

While chaplains who are assigned to deployable commands primarily only work with servicemembers, the chaplains at Pearl Harbor also have the opportunity to work with dependents as well.

"It really opens up the impact of being a chaplain when you are able to work with military families," said Lt. Dennis Kelly, a chaplain assigned to NAVSTA Pearl Harbor chaplain department.

Koester noted how valuable religious program specialists are to the chaplains at Pearl Harbor.

"The chaplains would not be able to perform as well as we do without the help from religious program specialists," said Koester. "They put in countless hours of work to fulfill our duties and responsibilities to the command."

Religious Program Specialist 1st Class Kimberly Robinson, assigned to NAVSTA Pearl Harbor's chaplain department, said that customer service is one of the most important things to provide to service members.

"Providing service to our personnel is our number one goal for our department," said Robinson. "We want to make sure that everyone who walks through our doors gets the help that they are looking for."

Personnel assigned to NAVSTA Pearl Harbor's chaplain department often feel that their job is very rewarding.

"The best part of my job is assisting the chaplains in directly impacting the morale and well-being of our servicemembers and their families," said Religious Program Specialist 2nd Class Bryan Bravo.

Pearl Harbor Memorial Chapel, Aloha Jewish Chapel and Submarine Memorial Chapel conduct religious services available to all service members and dependents onboard NAVSTA Pearl Harbor, and also at Naval Computer and Telecommunications Area Master Station Pacific Chapel in Wahiawa, Hawaii.

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