Military service often requires sacrifice. Service members have to sacrifice time with loved ones to fulfill orders. Families have to sacrifice residency stability so that serving members can be stationed where they need to be.
The military must sacrifice creature comforts and familiar surroundings for forward deployment. And, at times, men and women in the military may have to make the ultimate sacrifice for their soldiers, sailors, pilots, or Marines. However, these sacrifices can be acknowledged, whether publicly honored or privately observed, they are part of the reality of serving in the military.
Four Chaplains Memorial Day is one of the days of public observation. Every year on February 3, this day of remembrance is celebrated across the country. It honors four military chaplains who gave their lives to save the lives of their fellow service members during the Second World War.
Who Were the Four Chaplains?
People are known as the Four Chaplains are Methodist Pastor, Pastor George L. Fox, Reformed Church Pastor in America are Pastor Clark V. Poling, Reformed Rabbi Alexander D. Goode (Prov. doctor), and Roman Catholic priest Father John P. Washington. The four men met while attending the Chaplaincy School at Harvard to prepare for each of their chaplaincy appointments.
George Lansing Fox’s birthday was March 15, 1900 in Lewistown, Pennsylvania. He left school at 17 and lied about his age to serve as an army medical assistant during World War I. During his tour of duty, Fox was awarded a Purple Heart and a Silver Star. , and Croix de Guerre of France for his bravery. Then, during World War II, Fox accepted his appointment as an Army chaplain on July 24, 1942, and began his service on August 8, 1942. After completing the Army Chaplains School at Harvard, Fox reported to the 411th Coast Artillery Battalion at Camp Davis to the North. Carolina.
The birthday of Clark Vandersall Poling was August 7, 1910 in Columbus, Ohio. He attended Yale University's Divinity School in New Haven, Connecticut. During World War II, he applied for military chaplaincy, and was appointed on 10 June 1942. On 25 June, he reported to the 131st Quarter Truck Regiment at Camp Shelby, Hattiesburg. , Mississippi.
The place of birth of Reform Rabbi Alexander D. Goode (PhD) was Brooklyn, New York on May 10, 1911. He studied as a professor of Judaism at Hebrew Union University. After his graduation in 1937, he received his PhD from Johns Hopkins University in 1940. Goode initially applied to become a Navy chaplain in 1941, but was not accepted. However, after the attack on Pearl Harbor, he applied to become a military chaplain. Goode was appointed on July 21, 1942, and entered active duty on August 9, 1942. After studying at the Chaplains School at Harvard, he was assigned to Air Force Base Squadron 333 at Goldsboro, North Carolina.
Date of John Patrick Washington’s birth was July 18, 1908 in Newark, New Jersey. To prepare for the priesthood, he completed high school and college courses at Seton Hall, in South Orange, New Jersey. Washington graduated in 1931 with an A.B. Degree, then entered the Seminary of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception in Darlington, New Jersey, where he was ordained a priest on June 15, 1935. Immediately after Pearl Harbor, Washington accepted him as a military chaplain. He reported active duty on 9 May 1942, and was assigned to the 76th Infantry Division at Ft. George Meade, Maryland in June.
History of Four Chaplains Memorial Day
In 1988, the National Assembly established February 3 as the annual "Four Chaplains Memorial Day", however, its observations vary from state to state. Politicians make official statements, and sometimes, flags fly as high as half a foot. Many military groups, civic groups, and organizations also hold ceremonies and observations. The American Legion also hosts commemorative services and programs at multiple locations across the country.
The foundation of Four Chaplains Memorial Day
Housed in the former Navy Chapel at the decommissioned South Philadelphia Navy Yard, the Four Chaplains Memorial Foundation is the only 501 national charity associated with the Four Chaplains' legacy. The foundation was established by the families of chaplains and Dorchester survivors, including three survivors of U-boat 223 who were transported to the United States as POWs on board. Queen Mary a year after the Dorchester attack. The organization's official mission statement is "to promote unity without uniformity" and it achieves this mission through a variety of activities:
- The award honors individuals whose deeds symbolize the legacy of the four chaplains.
- Support for memorial services honoring the memory of chaplains.
- Publication of the Guide to the Four Interfaith Chaplains Memorial Service.
- Sponsors of the “Emergency Chaplaincy Corps” to provide assistance to first responders in disaster situations.
- Scholarship contests for graduating high school seniors, focusing on the values of “inclusiveness, cooperation, and solidarity” embodied in the Four Chaplains story. This includes a national art. Scholarship Competition, National Essay Scholarship Competition and National Project Salvation Scholarship Contest.
How to celebrate Four Chaplains Memorial Day
There are many meaningful ways to celebrate Four Chaplains Memorial Day. You can learn about the history of Four Chaplains as well as their victories. Moreover, let improve the knowledge about four chaplains for the youth to honor and be proud of their history. Don’t forget sharing some interesting information about this holiday on the media to spread and encourage people to take part in.
ObservedFour Chaplains Memorial Day has been observed annually on February 3rd.
Monday, February 3rd, 2020
Wednesday, February 3rd, 2021
Thursday, February 3rd, 2022
Friday, February 3rd, 2023
Saturday, February 3rd, 2024