The first Rabbi joins the Minnesota National Guard

(ABC 6 News) – The Minnesota National Guard conducted a swearing-in ceremony on Sunday on the stairs of the Minnesota State Capitol for Rabbi Frederick Kamil, adding to the diversity within the chaplain section.

“I have always wanted to join the military,” remarked Kamil. “To serve those who serve, that’s how I want to be a Rabbi.”

Records indicate Kamil is the first rabbi to join the Minnesota National Guard. “I have been a chaplain since 2003, and during this time and perhaps longer, the Minnesota Guard has not had a rabbi within its ranks,” said Army Colonel Buddy Winn, the Minnesota National Guard’s State Chaplain.

“The Minnesota National Guard places a high value on the rights of our personnel to exercise their rights to religious freedom,” said Winn. “Our unit ministry teams strive to provide timely and effective religious support to all our service members, regardless of faith tradition or affiliation. Adding Rabbi Kamil to the chaplaincy helps us to reach an even more diverse audience, which enhances the spiritual resilience of the force.”

The Minnesota National Guard has just under thirty chaplains in the state, representing more than 20 denominations. One of the Guard’s priorities is people, and diversity in the chaplains assists with inclusion efforts within the organization.

Chaplains are responsible for tending to the spiritual well-being of service members and their families, overseeing religious ministries, counseling sessions, and more.