Presentation on theme: "Moral Courage Vignette Learning Points. Issues Raised in Vignette Reverend Kelly feels ‘the call’ to minister to the spiritual needs of our troops in."— Presentation transcript:
Moral Courage Vignette Learning Points
Issues Raised in Vignette Reverend Kelly feels ‘the call’ to minister to the spiritual needs of our troops in Iraq, so many of whom are the same youngsters he tried to steer clear of gang membership and other troubles in “the hood.” So he bids goodbye to his surprised but proud congregation. For reasons he can’t explain he doesn’t adequately share with his wife the full extent of his “calling” to become an Army Chaplain in Iraq at an age when he should be retired. He tries to tell her more fully in a phone call from the battle zone, but it doesn’t work. As chaplain dealing with spiritual needs he begins to feel increasingly inadequate.
Presiding over funerals, comforting mourners who grieve the loss of friends, Chaplain Kelly experiences a growing sense that he is less of a man than he should be as those who turn to him honestly share their constant stream of suffering, fear, and anxiety. Chastised by a fellow African-American, a Sergeant Major, for remaining a noncombatant while others defend the hospital compound from attack, Rev. Kelly’s self esteem sinks further. Crouched with the soldiers, in the thick of the battle, reading from his bible and very much afraid, he feels foolish and irrelevant somehow, wondering, “Am I just a coward?”
When Jenn, a married mortuary affairs warrant officer, requests his help to stop her supervisor from sexually harassing her, he reassures her that he will help. But he fails to act on her behalf. On his return home, Brett, his college student daughter, confronts the former Chaplain about acting selfishly regarding his “calling” and causing a crisis in his marriage. Rev. Kelly seeks individual therapy during his challenging readjustment process. He openly confesses his moral courage failure to both his therapist and congregation.
Issues Addressed in Therapy The consequences of his decision to serve as an Army Chaplain in Iraq without adequately involving his wife in the decision-making process are discussed, along with its effects on his marriage. Rev. Kelly uncomfortably speaks of an alcohol “problem” but denies abuse or addiction. He discusses guilt and shame for failing to protect the female soldier who asked for his help regarding harassment and sincerely berates his inability “to speak truth to power.”
He acknowledges prolonged exposure to pain, suffering and death, and explores his feelings of confusion, burnout, depression and above all a question of “moral cowardice.” Rev. Kelly questions his faith and effectiveness as a minister, asking, “Am I just a hypocrite?”
Questions What Stages of Change does he go through? How would you address his crisis of faith issues?