CIU Chaplaincy student commissioned into Navy during Chapel

September 25, 2019

By Ireland Kost

CIU Student Writer

Raising his right hand, Caleb McKillop, a Columbia International University chaplaincy student, was publicly commissioned into the U.S. Navy on the stage of Shortess Chapel, vowing to support and defend the Constitution with God’s help. 

Dr. Mike Langston, CIU professor of Chaplaincy Ministries, performed the ceremony before the CIU family during a Chapel service.

“Let me just say what a great privilege it is to be able to stand before you this morning in uniform after 36 serving our country as a Navy chaplain,” Langston said, taking the stage. Before conducting the ceremony, Langston reminded the crowd that the oath, dating back to 1775, is saturated with historical significance.

“It’s the same oath that all elected officials in the United States take to support the Constitution, to defend the Constitution and to abide by its laws,” he stated. “We’re going to officially bring Caleb into the Navy,”

Upon McKillop’s swearing in, the audience rose to their feet in a standing ovation accompanied by joyful cheering and clapping for the young chaplain and God’s call on his life. His parents also honored him, standing with him in support during the ceremony.

Immediately, McKillop performed his first official act as a Navy chaplain, offering a prayer of adoration to God, “God of mercy and grace, today is a day of celebration, because we are celebrating that You have been faithful to us.”

After the event McKillop said the Lord has been faithful to prepare him for the calling to military chaplaincy.

“Taking the oath of office was a surreal experience, and it was the culmination of a lifelong dream to serve God in some capacity in the military,” McKillop said.

Is God calling you to chaplaincy? Check out CIU’s Master of Arts in Chaplaincy or Master of Divinity in Chaplaincy. Columbia International University consistently ranks among the Top Regional Universities in the South by U.S. News & World Report. Excitement is growing on campus with CIU’s first baseball program in development and new academic programs such as the Doctor of Ministerial LeadershipRequest information on enrollment at CIU and Columbia Biblical Seminary or call (800) 777-2227, ext. 5024.