New uniform, new role

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Shandresha Mitchell
  • 6th Air Mobility Wing public affairs
"I just want to thank God for my experience and all the wonderful people I have met in the Air Force and for the opportunity to further serve in the Navy," commented Lt. Cornelius Johnson, Navy chaplain.

Prior to commissioning into the Navy, Johnson had served as an Air Force chaplain since 2004.

During his 11 years as an Air Force chaplain, Johnson encountered many challenges; however now as a Navy chaplain, he will be presented with a new set of challenges. His responsibilities will not solely include being a chaplain to Navy personnel, but to the Marines and Coast Guard as well.

"I will have the opportunity to provide ministry to many different services in many different and unique environments," stated Johnson. "I will be challenged to learn all the service traditions, so that I can provide ministry to them and their families."

Johnson pointed out that his biggest challenge will be to provide wisdom, care and support to a variety of people who come from different religious backgrounds.

However, he went on to say that being a daily visible reminder of faith and helping individuals overcome whatever problems they are facing will be the most rewarding part of his job.

"The leadership lessons and dynamics I have learned in the Air Force and experience I have acquired in leading worship services, deployed chapel staffs, and chapel volunteers are a few of the things I plan to bring to my new position in the Navy," said Johnson.

When it comes to goals, Johnson wants to grow as an officer and be a great representative for the military along with providing increasingly impactful spiritual support to service members and their families.

His three-year probationary period in the Navy has already begun; and in late November, he will be departing MacDill Air Force Base, Florida to start spreading his ministry with the personnel located at 29 Palms Marine Base in Twentynine Palms, California.

"I think my current understanding of military life, culture, and traditions, as well as the experience that I gained from the Air Force, will greatly benefit me during my time in the Navy," stated Johnson.

As he begins on his new path, Johnson plans to make a difference in people's lives every day. He is ready and willing for any situation that comes his way and will use his knowledge of ministry to take on any challenges.