Chaplain empowers base through message

A Hill Honor Guard member presents arms during Hill Air Force Base’s National Prayer Breakfast held here March 29, while a small group of singers from the 75th Medical Group called the “Melodic Medics” sing the National Anthem. Photo by Efrain Gonzalez

A Hill Honor Guard member presents arms during Hill Air Force Base’s National Prayer Breakfast held here March 29, while a small group of singers from the 75th Medical Group called the “Melodic Medics” sing the National Anthem. Photo by Efrain Gonzalez

HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah -- "The Lord is my crew chief, I shall not be broken," said Chaplain (Brig. Gen.) Cecil Richardson, U. S. Air Force deputy chief of chaplains, in a unique prayer during the Hill Air Force Base annual National Prayer Breakfast March 29.

Nearly 750 base personnel of various faith backgrounds heard the chaplain's message which culminated the morning's events that revolved around the theme, "Lord, guard and guide," the first words of the Air Force Hymn.

"This was by far the best prayer breakfast I have ever been to," Col. Scott Chambers, 75th Air Base Wing commander said. "The atmosphere created by our chapel members, the spiritual music provided by Utah Master Chorale, and most importantly the incredible speech, incorporating his life lessons, Chaplain Richardson shared with Team Hill struck a positive cord with me and I hope with all in attendance."

Chaplain Richardson's message revolved around the biblical text, Exodus 33:20. In the message, he used personal anecdotes as examples of how God guards and guides people in their daily lives. One of the most moving of these was a story of an encounter with a drunken man beneath a tree when the chaplain was a child. The man pulled him close and told him that this is what happens when you drink. The chaplain credits this meeting as delivering him from a continuing history of alcoholism and abuse that had plagued his family for generations.

The attendees were treated to a breakfast provided by Club Hill, and live music was supplied by the Utah Master Chorale. Scriptural readings were given in the Jewish, Muslim and Christian traditions. Guests also saw an original slide show produced by Chaplain Haltom and Tech. Sgt. James Schuler, 367th Training Support Squadron. The multimedia show featured deployment photos and music by the Air Force Band revolving around the theme of the event.

"My goal for the event was that people would leave better than when they came in," said Chaplain (Capt.) David Haltom, a 75th Air Base Wing protestant chaplain and project officer for the breakfast. "I believe the breakfast impacted lives and empowered many Team Hill members of all faith traditions."

The response from the breakfast and Chaplain Richardson's message has been so outstanding that Chaplain Haltom will be providing a follow-up e-devotional for those of Christian faith this week in his "True Target" e-devotional series, as well as Chaplain Richardson's full prayer, at http://truetarget.blogspot.com.