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Prayer Breakfast Honors Military

By Rachel Judy | April 6, 2011

Rev. James Hutchens

Current and past members of the armed forces joined the Regent University community for a prayer breakfast on Friday, April 1.

The service featured readings from current and former military members, including Lt. Rickey Bennett, chaplain, USN, Admiral Vern Clark, USN (Ret.), former Chief of Naval Operations and distinguished professor in Regent's Robertson School of Government and School of Global Leadership & Entrepreneurship, and Charles Hanley, admissions recruiter for the School of Education (USN '01-'05). Christian Broadcasting Network representatives—the Rev. Sonny Mathew and Hope Gummer—also offered readings.

"Regent shares common values with the armed forces, so inviting our military partners and friends in Hampton Roads to join in prayer with our Regent military community is an honor and privilege—all to the glory of God," explained David Boisselle, director of military affairs.

The featured speaker for the breakfast was the Rev. James Hutchens (brigadier general) U.S. Army (Ret.). A former Army chaplain, Hutchens spoke about his own military experiences and seeing the promises of God in the midst of war.

Using Psalms 91 as his focal point—a psalm he terms "the soldier's psalm," Hutchens spoke about the protection God provides, even in the midst of war.

As a chaplain, Hutchens learned early on that he was most effective close to his men. "If you're going to have a ministry with your men, you have to be where they are," he said. That meant he was right alongside a medic who rescued soldier after soldier, receiving several wounds of his own in the process. That meant he influenced the way a commanding officer treated a prisoner who had killed one of their own men. "God preserves and the promises of God to protect still stand," Hutchens said.

Hutchens completed more than 37 years of enlisted and commissioned service, both on active duty in the U.S. Army and with the U.S. Army Reserves and the Army National Guard, in combat and peacetime, with conventional as well as Special Forces (Green Berets). While serving in Vietnam, he was the first chaplain wounded in the war. His book, Beyond Combat, tells of his experience as a combat chaplain. Currently, he serves as the president and chairman of the board of The Jerusalem Connection International and editor of the online magazine, The Jerusalem Connection.

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