Navy applauded for decision on atheist ‘chaplain’

Two members of Congress are applauding the U.S. Navy for rejecting an atheist’s application to become a chaplain.

The service in 2014 rejected the application of Jason Heap, who was backed by the Humanist Society. Heap sued and lost, but a Navy chaplain advisory board recently recommended approving his application.

However, dozens of members of Congress wrote to the Navy to express their outrage, and the application was turned down. The letter stated bluntly, “Without a belief in the transcendent, and with an avowed opposition to religion itself, an individual cannot fulfill the mission and duties of a chaplain.”

“The very definition of the chaplaincy was at stake here, so I’m relieved to see the Navy’s response,” said Rep. Doug Lamborn, R-Colo. “Appointing an atheist to a historically religious role would’ve gone against everything the chaplaincy was created to do. It would open the door to a host of so-called chaplains

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