Christian, Muslim and Buddhist chaplains have come together onboard Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii with a common goal to understand how they can better support their military personnel.

The two-day Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2022 International Chaplaincy Symposium offered an opportunity for several partner nations, including Australia, Canada, Indonesia, Republic of Korea and the United States, to discuss religious affairs during military operations.

The opening prayer, which was conducted in the Joint Pearl Harbor Memorial Chapel by a Buddhist chaplain, set the tone to share and learn from every faith.

Royal Australian Navy Chaplain Catherine Wynn Jones believes meeting people, regardless of their views, and helping them live life to the full is the most important aspect of her job.

“Self-care is important for everyone to get through challenging times,” Chaplain Wynn Jones said.

“Developing friendships, connections and interoperability across all the nations at the symposium was an important takeaway.”

Chaplain Wynn Jones said the symposium reinforced harmony across all denominations in their mission and purpose.

Royal Canadian Forces Commander Shaun Yaskiw, a chaplain with 22 years of experience with the United Church of Canada, currently advises military leadership on the well-being of serving personnel.

“My role is to help senior leaders understand the truth on the ground and what is affecting people's lives serving within the command structure,” Commander Yaskiw said.

“With a multi-denominational perspective at the symposium, I learned we each have our own strengths, weaknesses and limitations.

“We need to be willing to listen, talk and communicate together, it gives us broader understanding of what we share and how together we can multiply what we bring.”