Welcome to the Chaplain’s Corner

January 2018

Greetings NNOA Family and Friends,

One of the core attributes of The National Naval Officers Association is community service. We have local chapters spread throughout the Far East and United States. The organization is set up this way to have far-reaching support into local communities out of which we have recruited, nurtured, and mentored some of the Sea Service finest Officers. The strong support of our local chapters, enhanced by the radical full support of retirees, and active duty members is what gives the organization ZESTO!
There is a Shift happening in the collective consciousness of our world. Whether you identify as religious, non-religious, sacred or spiritual something metaphysical is taking place on Earthly plane. I was ending our Christmas Eve Worship Services, as we were passing the peace within our community of faith; someone mentioned to me, that 2017 was an unusually painful year for them. I stood briefly paralyzed by the unexpected flood of emotions the speaker struggled with as they shared events which rendered them heart broken, filled with grief in the midst of a joyful worship experience. I made a compassionate mental note to keep them lifted in prayer. Pain is a suggestion that something is discordant in the mind, body, or soul. It can cause permanent injury; pain can shut you down and slow you down causing irreparable damage. Pain transcends religion, ethnic, gender and socio-economic backgrounds- pain brings us into a new awareness of our god, others, and ourselves. The good news is that we can come into a new way of livings, being, seeing, and thinking if we allow our painful moments to raise our consciousness. The choice is so simple it is scary, our pain can transform our thinking bringing us into a new way of existing, or our pain can lead to permanent paralysis, cementing the moment as a monument, a statue in our lives, which we always stop to visit paying homage to the wound it caused. Ever reminding ourselves that we are not healed we are simple memorializing cataclysmic pain. We use to say growing up that we needed the voice of the Elders to decode the SHIFT, because shifts often create pain, there is nothing new under the sun-just new packaging. The Elders are record keepers of the annuals of our history; they recorded each SHIFT because they were the SHIFT! I joined NNOA as a young LTJG because of my mentors, Dr. Brenda Bradley-Davila, Dr. Marian Wilkerson, and, Dr. Charles Wilson. They physically took me by the hand (sometimes while singing “Precious Lord, take my hand lead me on let me stand, I am tired, I am weak I am worn.”) These Elders have now transitioned into retirement whose testimonies I hold dear giving me wisdom & courage to stand when I want to run, to pray when I want to fold up and remain silent. I stand upon their shoulders, whispering words of wisdom and peace.

NNOA needs the voices of its Elders who have found their way back into local communities, for there is a generation of officers striving to make good on a promise in the midst of a Pharaoh who knew not Joseph. Communities process their SHIFT by the “reclaiming, renaming, and reframing of their unique story.” NNOA has a story in context of the Sea Services. Let it be told and Let the Elders speak in 2018.” Recalling and sharing our sacred stories brings renewal, and transformational healing” according to Dr. Edward Wimberley, Professor of Pastoral Care. May we find the courage to whisper words of wisdom in the sacred sharing and retelling of “How I got over.” Happy new year and happy new you!

Let It Be..
And when the broken hearted people
Living in the world agree
There will be an answer, let it be.
For though they may be parted there is still a chance that they will see
There will be an answer, let it be.
Let it be, let it be, let it be, let it be.

And when the night is cloudy
There is still alight that shines on me
Shine until tomorrow, let it be.
I wake up to the sound of music
Mother Mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom let it be.
Let it be, let it be, let it be, let it be.
There will be an answer, let it be.–John Lennon, Paul McCartney

Rev. Kimberly Cain, NNOA Chaplain

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