Naval Training Station, Newport, RI
“It may seem strange to discover that there is a school for the training of Chaplains, men who are already ordained and well qualified to perform the functions of their ministry.
“The purpose of the Navy School for Chaplains, now located at the Naval Training Station, Newport, Rhode Island, is to assist the civilian clergyman in making the transition to the Navy.
“Since the school was first established, there has always been a spirit and concept of ‘co-operation without compromise’ whereby clergymen of many denominations are bound together for a common cause in the Chaplain Corps of the United States Navy. With his background of religious training, and motivated by a true sense of vocation as a man of God, the Chaplain is trained in the various aspects of Naval knowledge. This makes him an integral part of the Naval service. With this knowledge of the Navy, he is better equipped to provide spiritual leadership to the personnel he serves.
“At the Chaplains’ school, there is an opportunity for better understanding among the many members of various religious denominations. There is no attempt to compromise-and never will be-any religious principle and doctrine we hold dear. But while at the school, Chaplains benefit from learning something about the religious customs and beliefs of their classmates, and when they are assigned, they have a background which is valuable to their ministry as Navy Chaplains.
“The course of instruction at the Chaplains’ school, which takes eight weeks, revolves around two main units: 1. Naval Orientation; 2. The Navy Chaplain.
“In addition to these major units, there are also several sub-units of instruction.
SUB-UNITS OF INSTRUCTIONS
. . . . . . . . . . . VISITING LECTURERS
“Subjects appropriate both to Naval Orientation and the Navy Chaplains are covered by especially invited Senior Naval Officers. These officers, with wide experience, are proficient in special branches of the Navy.
“During the two-month course, field trips are arranged for visiting Naval activities where the student Chaplain may observe the religious facilities and activities of Chaplains on active duty.
“On these field trips, the student Chaplain is introduced to an environment that is new and interesting. His classroom instruction comes to life, both as concerns the Naval Service and the work of the Chaplain, as he visits the U.S. Submarine Base at New London, the Fleet Training Center at Newport, the U.S Naval Air Station at Quonset Point, the SeaBee Training Center at Davisville, and specialists schools such as for Chemical Defense, Damage Control, Fire Fighting, Radiological Defense, Fleet Gunnery, and so forth.
. . . . . . . . . . . DAY OF RECOLLECTION
“A day is set aside each month as a ‘day of recollection.’ Protestant Chaplains go to a local church, Catholics go to a nearby Retreat House and Jewish Chaplains are given the use of the Synagogue.
“The most practical aspect of the Chaplain School comes from Sunday assignments. Here, the Chaplain receives the inspiration which comes from ministering to men of the Navy and helping them keep the requirements of their religion, according to the manner and forms of their own church.”1
1NAVPERS-MCNPS 35334, “The Chaplain Comes Aboard,” 4-26-55, pg. 5-6.