With the deepest respect for our U.S. military, I urge you ro address the ongoing problem of anti-Christian persecution and the silencing of conservative viewpoints in the U.S. armed forces.

The law is clear that the religious liberties of our men and women in uniform are not to be abridged; that they have the same freedoms under the Constitution as any other U.S. citizen. Yet we are seeing a continuation of instances in which of instances in which military members – and chaplains, in particular – are being punished snd threatened for expressing their religious faith in the course of performing their duties. This type of action reflects a persistent movement and an increasing willingness on the part of the federal government to restrict and silence religious and conservative speech.

In your leadership role, you have a unique capability and responsibility to make a difference in this matter. I support you in standing up for these brave men and women and urge you to take all possible appropriate action on this issue, with the goal of ensuring that the military and Pentagon follow the law and end anti-Christian and anti-conservative discrimination and persecution throughout the armed services.

I write this letter impelled by my own experience as an airman in the 8th Air Force in 1945 flying 32 combat missions over Germany as a member of a B-17 bomber flight crew of the 303rd Bomb Group.

Sincerely Yours,


+Rene Henry Gracida, Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi


About abyssum

I am a retired Roman Catholic Bishop, Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi, Texas
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  1. extavian says:

    I applaud and endorse the sentiments expressed in this correspondence. As you may recall from our time together in Jerusalem on pilgrimage, I served for two years on active duty as a Navy Lieutenant and Navigator of the USS Sylvania, receiving letters of commendation for leadership and professional competence. Before that I spent six months as an officer on an ammunition ship in Vietnam. As a law student I was privileged to work with Lt Col. Charles E. Rice, USMC, at Notre Dame on legal issues affecting the lives of vets, including his own son. Based on this history, it’s my recollection it is illegal under the UCMJ for anyone in a position of leadership to inhibit the political speech of anyone under his/her command or to threaten punishment of any kind so long as the views expressed do not directly conflict with the good order of our military.

    I hope you stay well. You are a national treasure.

    Gene Silva

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