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Navy Chief of Chaplains visits 7th Fleet

By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Leonard Adams, 7th Fleet Public Affairs Office | | Nov. 7, 2019

YOKOSUKA, Japan -- U.S. Navy Chief of Chaplains Rear Adm. Brent W. Scott visited Fleet Activities Yokosuka Nov. 6-7, engaging senior leadership, meeting with religious ministry teams, and Sailors and families from across the region and waterfront.

During his visit, Scott attended an office call with Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet, Vice Adm. Bill Merz, greeted Fleet/Religious Ministry Teams (RMT’s) at an-all hands town-hall meeting at the Base Chapel, and visited Sailors aboard the Navy’s forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76)  .

Rear Adm. Scott and Vice Adm. Merz’s meeting took place aboard the 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19), where both leaders engaged in dialog aimed to gain a greater awareness and knowledge to support 7th Fleet RMTs, and develop and encourage an operational mindset at and from the sea for the Forward Deployed Naval Force (FDNF).

"Any time RMTs have the opportunity to engage the Chaplain Corps' community leader in our operational environment it is also an opportunity to highlight the challenges and unique missions that are FDNF”, said Capt. Daniel Mode, 7th Fleet chaplain.

Across the fleet the religious-ministries team provides support for multiple religions, including Christian services, Buddhist meditation, Jewish Shabbat, Islamic prayer and more. They perform specialty services such as baptisms, full confidentiality counseling and coordinate community relations events. The availability of these services is important to many Sailors aboard ships during periods underway in the 7th Fleet area of operations.

“Every crew on every ship is faced with some kind of challenge that they have to face”, said Scott

During Scott’s meeting with senior chaplains, he stated one of his main goals is to continue to operationalize Religious Ministry across the Chaplain Corps, and challenged all RMTs to strengthen their personal character.

The U.S. Navy Chaplain Corps support Sailors, and their families across the fleet, and their mission is to minister in every echelon of command across the Sea Services and domains to build personal, unit, and family readiness and strengthen spirit, moral character, and toughness.

“While this is Scott's first visit to Yokosuka and the 7th Fleet as the Chief of Chaplains, he is already very familiar with the operational tempo and unique demands of FDNF, as he previously served as the Pacific Fleet Chaplain and in that role made a number of visits to the 7th Fleet”, said Mode.

Scott also met with Commander, Task Force 70, Rear Adml. George M. Wikoff, and Commander, U.S. Naval Forces, Japan, Rear Adml. Brian P. Fort and various other Sailors, and families while in the 7th Fleet area of operation.

U.S. 7th Fleet provides security alongside allies and partners throughout a free and open Indo-Pacific.  As the U.S. Navy’s largest forward-deployed fleet, 7th Fleet operates roughly 50-70 ships and submarines and 140 aircraft with approximately 20,000 Sailors.