Sabbatical: An Army Chaplain Reflects on the Benefits of Study and Rest

By Chaplain Daniel Werho, US Army, Fort Bragg, NC

Prologue: “C4,” beyond the name of a popular plastic explosive, it also stands for the Army “Chaplain Captain Career Course.” It is designed as a respite following a new chaplain’s initial operational ministry at the battalion level; often including one or more deployments and OCONUS (Outside the Continental United States) assignments. More importantly, it’s a time of study, reflection, and preparation for more intense ministry at the next higher “brigade;” and includes training in the supervision of two to five subordinate battalion ministry teams. It’s the starting point of an increasing administration and supervisory role in a military chaplain’s ministry career.

Daniel reflects on this training:

“Sabbatical. The past six months (and especially the past quarter) have been a true blessing. After the initial busy-ness of the first half of career course was complete, the pace finally slowed to the point that we could take advantage of being off the duty rosters, preaching schedules, etc. It was truly refreshing keeping in mind that my wife, Susanna, was finally feeling better with the pregnancy. We were able to take a step back from ministry and reflect on where we are and where we are going. I was able to read several books on preaching, leadership, parenting, and ministry all while being able to attend different churches (instead of leading them for the first time in a while; it truly does give you a different perspective). Now my kitbag* is full of energy, passion, and ideas so I’m itching to get back in the saddle with my new unit. I was finally able to meet and address my new BN this past Thursday (December ’17) and they seem like a great bunch that I’m looking forward to serving with.”

Please pray for:

  • Major Transitions.
  • New location, new unit, and a baby on the way at the end of March.
  • An anticipated stressful next 6 months and beyond.
  • Thankfully we are rested for it.

For more articles of the unique nature of chaplaincy ministry, go to  To find out more about endorsement as a chaplain, contact Andy Meverden, Director of Chaplaincy at


*Kitbag is a military term for the repository of a Soldier’s specialty tools. Whereas an infantryman might carry night vision optical devices and weapons, a chaplain carries ministry resources, many also of a high-tech nature.