How can soldiers find faith and support when they’re far from home?
The players are loaded with spiritual messages, courtesy of The Frontline Faith Project.
It’s like “somebody by your side to remind you that there’s a higher purpose, to remind you of the hardships that others have had to endure, to make your hardships relatively small and to remind you of your core beliefs,” says Lt. Loris Lapri of the U.S. Army’s Second Cavalry Division.
Cheri Lomonte started the grassroots Frontline Faith effort last spring after learning that some servicemen and women can go months without having access to a military chaplain.
“The soldiers in the field … once they get it, they want their best friend to have it too…. And the feedback we are getting is: “I get to hear Mass every day” or ” I get to hear these prayers.”
Lomonte, a Catholic, only got her own parish — Emmaus Church in Lakeway, Texas — involved at first. But the project grew exponentially, and now nearly 7, 000 soldiers have received the MP3 players.
They include a homily, religious music, heartfelt readings and prayers. One player included a sermon from Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio, the archbishop for the U.S. Military, saying, “The love of God and the love of neighbor is the same unique reality and cannot be separated”
The message provides comfort to soldiers at war. “Sometimes you’ll operate in relatively remote areas with small groups of soldiers … and the Army doesn’t have enough chaplains to support each and every outpost with a chaplain,” says Lapri, who has seen action in Afghanistan.
And find out how you can help by visiting the Frontline Faith website.