Faith a powerful ally

Petra Lessoing
Kaiserslautern American

***image1***KMC members of different faiths gathered to pray for their nation, leaders and the world at the National Prayer Breakfast Jan. 20 at the Ramstein Officers’ Club.

Col. Bob Otto, 435th Air Base Wing vice commander, was the master of ceremony and read the Prayer for the Nation.

Chaplain (Col.) Richard Elliott, 435th ABW, introduced this year’s guest speaker, Chaplain (Maj. Gen.) Charles C. Baldwin, Chief of the Air Force Chaplain Service, who flew combat missions in Vietnam before he became a chaplain.

“The one message I have for you today is: I’m grateful for what you do every day,” said General Baldwin. He emphasized that men and women serve with great commitment and seek for the help of God. In his speech, “Don’t Sell your Saddle,” General Baldwin encouraged people to keep their faith and belief in God just like a cowboy sticks to his saddle.

“Airmen, Soldiers and Marines use the most powerful weapon, which is extremely user-friendly and cannot be seen – faith,” he said. “By faith, we step through doors and fight terrorism.”

The general said that faith brings hope when the trail is rough and every faith has its local map. The Jewish have the Old Testament, Christians have the New Testament and Muslims have the Quran.
“It’s everybody’s choice to believe in God, and hop on and hang on.”

Brig. Gen. Rosanne Bailey, 435th ABW commander, presented him a wing coin saying that she is praying every day to have the courage “to hop on,” hoping that people maintain the right path as guided by God.

The U.S. Air Forces in Europe Woodwind Quintett presented the musical prelude and postlude. Virginia Wootten, daughter of Army Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Doug Wootten sang “From a Distance” accompanied on the piano by Georgina Lavery.

In 1953, the International Christian Leadership group sponsored the First Annual Presidential Prayer Breakfast, or National Prayer Breakfast, in Washington, D.C. With President Dwight D.

Eisenhower in attendance, the standard was set for all presidents who would follow. This originated the concept of an organized event encouraging prayer for leaders.