Monday, February 19, 2007

Army minister get's kicked out of Iraq

For Gods and Country: The Army Chaplain Who Wanted to Switch to Wicca? Transfer Denied.

Amazing chunk of MSM coverage in the Washington Post! What a story:

"...I realized so many innocent people are dying again in the name of God," Larsen says..."When you think back over the Catholic-Protestant conflict, how the Jews have suffered, how some Christians justified slavery, the Crusades, and now the fighting between Shiite and Sunni Muslims, I just decided I'm done...I will not be part of any church that unleashes its clergy to preach that particular individuals or faith groups are damned...". He decided the religion that best matched his universalist vision was Wicca, a blend of witchcraft, feminism and nature worship that has ancient pagan roots...

Of course, the Army does everything it can to screw the guy once it was found out he was becoming Wiccan (there would have been no problem if all he did was switch to some other Xtian sect):

...On July 6, he applied to become the first Wiccan chaplain in the U.S. armed forces, setting off an extraordinary chain of events. By year's end, his superiors not only denied his request but also withdrew him from Iraq and removed him from the chaplain corps, despite an unblemished service record...

As pointed out in the piece, some of this dovetails with the entire Patrick Stewart affair. I love Larsen's comment here, as it speaks to the heart of Wicca and Neo Paganism:

"...You can't intellectually talk about witchcraft. You gotta show up," he says. "What Carl Jung, Joseph Campbell and a lot of us universalists think is, people need the magical side, the mythological side, of religion..."

I've stated as much before in a recent post. It's great to see such an incident getting mainstream media coverage. Please read the entire article, it's very informative.

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