NH National Guard defends praying chaplains

NH National Guard defends praying chaplains

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. — The New Hampshire Air National Guard says it will continue to allow chaplains to pray at on-base events despite receiving a letter from the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) demanding they stop.

FFRF, a Wisconsin-based advocacy group that fights for a strict separation of Church and State, sent the letter on behalf of a guardsman who complained about the prayers that took place in official ceremonies, according to The Christian Post.

A spokesman for the New Hampshire National Guard, which oversees the state’s Air National Guard, said no “formal complaints” from airmen have been received by the base about the prayers and they have no plans to respond to the letter.

“We will continue as we’ve done before,” said spokesperson Greg Heilshorn. “It’s our tradition. We believe our chaplains … [are a] vital part of our organization.”

The First Liberty Institute, a Texas-based law firm that defends religious liberty, said uniformed chaplains are legally protected and permitted to give such convocations. (TAB)