Category Archives: Uncategorized

New website

The old web site was becoming a tad unstable, so we’ve migrated to a new hosting platform and, in the process, reorganized and streamlined the presentation of information.  The website address is still  It’s up and running even as we continue to add to it.

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Memorial Day 2017


The above photograph is a still from a memorial held in Iraq in 2007.  Below are the notifications we have received over the last year.  We join in the collective mourning for the loss of too many.

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Dignified Transfer 10/21/2016

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Dignified Transfer 11/7/2016

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Dignified Transfer 11/15/2016

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Dignified Transfer 1/11/2016

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Dignified Transfer 3/21/2017

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Dignified Transfer 3/31/2017

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Dignified Transfer 4/10/2017

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Dignified Transfer 5/3/2017

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Memorial Day 2016

Throughout the year, notices from  Air Force Mortuary Affairs land in our in-box, reminding us of how much appreciation we owe to the men and women who die while serving in the armed forces as well as to their families and friends who have suffered their loss.

Only if the families grant permission for the media to cover their loved one’s return does the Air Force notify the media  — this compendium of the notices that have reached us since Memorial Day 2015 is therefore not a complete list of the men and women who have died in uniform over the last year.

Memorial Day 2016

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Remembering with gratitude the men and women who have served the nation and the chaplains who have served them.

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From talk to action

Intersections International has just announced that it is bringing its veteran-civilian dialogs to a close… in order to make way for Service Together (you can read more about it on its blog).

Cannot think of a better way to celebrate Veterans’ Day than to move from mutually respectful conversation to joint service.


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with apologies

All the blogs we posted from 2007 when we were filming in Afghanistan and Iraq got frozen, so we are now transferring what we can salvage to this wordpress blog.  Unfortunately, every time we publish one, subscribers will get something from 2007 in their inboxes.

There will be several over the next few days, and we apologize for this avalanche of old news.


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Blue Star Museums

Screen Shot 2013-06-05 at 4.35.34 PMFor the third year in a row,  museums around the county are offering free admission to active duty military personnel and their families through Labor Day.  At last count, about 2,000 institutions are participating in this Blue Star Museum initiative.  A

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handy map at the NEA’s Blue Star Museum page lets you click on a state and see a list of all participating museums.  They range from fine art museums to natural history, botanical gardens, and speciality museums.



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Veterans’ Day

Our gratitude goes out to all veterans and their families.



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War and Its Wake

It has been an amazing privilege to contribute a chapter to War Trauma and Its Wake: Expanding the Circle of Healing which Routledge is publishing in May/June.

Here is a flyer with the table of contents  in pdf form: War Trauma and Its Wake (it also offers a 20% discount on pre-orders).  The chapter I contributed deals with the journey home for physically wounded troops and their families and it is greatly informed by the troops and families we got to know while making Chaplains Under Fire.

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The heavy toll on chaplains

A very interesting report by Religion & Ethics Newsweekly explores the toll on chaplains of their service in combat.   As reporter Lucky Severson points out,

According to the army, since the beginning of the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, it’s chaplains have served a total of more than 20,000 months in combat zones, some have gone on as many as eight tours of duty. One survey revealed that 20 percent of these chaplains had suffered compassion fatigue or some sort of PTSD.

A chaplain with many years of service,  John Read, recounts:

You see the gun shot wounds, the stabbings, the burn patients, all the volatility of the kinds of things you see in a war zone. I mean I recognized there, as a clinically trained chaplain working in a hospital setting how that would affect me in terms of questions of life, death, grief, loss. The things that profoundly become kind of moral, ethical, spiritual aspects of our lives.

reporter Lucky Severson: He tells of seeing the body parts of 38 little Iraqi kids blown up by a terrorist bomb right after learning he had just become a grandfather. And of the soldier who died in his arms.

Chaplain Read: He had just become a naturalized citizen two months before his death, killed in a rocket attack. I held him in my arms as he died and gave him, recited a prayer from his specific faith that he was from, and the peaceful look on his face as he thanked me and died, I will just never forget. But there isn’t a day that I don’t wish that he could somehow be with his wife and kids.

 This report, which aired on Veterans Day, is well worth seeing and, in a sense, picks up where our documentary leaves off.  Think of the chaplain in the film who ensured the dignified transfer of remains in Kuwait or spend much of their deployment in hospitals.


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