Chaplains Corner

09/23/2014  | 
Chaplains Corner

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — On July 11, 2014, a total of 16 Soldiers from the 108th Training Command HQ attended the Military Appreciation Luncheon at the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, N.C. The following were Soldier’s reflections and comments on this event.

Lt. Col. Val Clay
(108th TC, EO OIC)

It was a pleasure to be invited to the Billy Graham library for a Military Appreciation Luncheon. A number of 108th Soldiers were invited to lunch by the Billy Graham staff. Major Tang, 108th AGR Chaplain, gathered the group together as we left from the headquarters parking lot. A number of people had never been there before; I had been there once before myself. When we pulled into the parking lot we were greeted by volunteers of the library. We saw the house where Billy Graham grew up, it was moved from its original site just a few miles from the library in Charlotte. We entered the Library through the base of the cross-shaped entrance. It was a unique experience to enter a building that way. Once inside we were guided to the lunch area by other smiling volunteers.

The luncheon was very special. We were thanked for our service; there was singing and some story-telling. There were also service members representing all branches of the services there. We proudly sang the Army Song as we saluted one another. After the luncheon was over we went on a tour of the library. The tour described the early years of Billy Graham, how he met his wife, the lives he impacted and the countries he helped shaped through the word of the Lord. The 108th Soldiers felt the experience was both breathtaking and educational. It was truly a spiritually uplifting experience that should be shared with others.

Sgt. 1st Class Poore
(108th TC, HHC, Training NCO)

I really enjoyed the lunch today. The Billy Graham Library put on a real class event. I grew up in this area and remember Billy Graham on TV back in the seventies and early eighties. The work he has done and the work his son continues to do is truly a blessing for the world. There is a special place in heaven for him and his son. The library brought back many fond memories of days gone by. I only wish I could have had another BBQ sandwich!

Sgt. Shinika Lambert (108th TC, G1, Human Resources Specialist)

I had the opportunity to participate in the Billy Graham Library Military Appreciation Luncheon and Tour. I am still overwhelmed with emotions from this powerful experience. The hospitality provided was outstanding and the appreciation expressed to all of the military branches was beyond measure. I proudly put on my uniform every day. The demonstration of love shown by those reminded me that others truly recognize the sacrifices made by the men and women in the Armed Forced who are dedicated to representing the “Land of the Free”. Need I say more?

I thoroughly enjoyed the luncheon, program and tour. I found Billy Graham’s Christian values to be in line with our Army Values. He was loyal to God, and understood his duty to share the good news of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He respected those of all genders, races and nationalities, even during the times of segregation he expressed that God’s love and salvation was for everyone. He demonstrated numerous acts of selfless service when he responded to national crisis. He honored the commitment to evangelize when he was offered other prestigious opportunities. He maintained his integrity and the integrity of the bible without compromising. His personal courage has resulted in millions of people developing a relationship with God. It also serves as an example to Christians how we should boldly share the good news with others we come in contact with and live a life that exemplifies the characteristics of Christ. I am so humbled to have participated in this event.

Sgt. 1st Class Regina Clay
(North East Retention Command, ARRTD NCO)

I was highly impressed with everything and everyone. I thought Bessie (the cow) did an outstanding job of narrating the life of Billy Graham – very educational. All the personnel greeted you with a friendly and pleasant smile and you could feel their loving spirits. The food was delicious. The atmosphere was so energetic and inspiring. I will be going back another day to take my time and enjoy the tour. I am going to take my daughter and my grandchildren. I will spread the word to others as well. It was a great experience.

Maj. Chad Byas

I would like to thank Chaplain Tang for arranging such a wonderful trip to the Billy Graham Library. I knew Billy Graham had a voice that reached far and wide. I did not realize how far it reached, and how many hearts he touched. I told my wife about the library. It is definitely something both she and my kids must experience. Once again, thank you so much. I look forward to visiting the library in the future

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