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FM 22-51



D-1. Introduction

This appendix addresses the general role of the unit ministry team in the commander's program
of combat stress control and in battle fatigue ministry. The unit ministry team consists of a
chaplain and chaplain assistant assigned to units as far forward as the brigade, forward support
battalion, each maneuver battalion, and some combat support battalions. This team provides
immediate support to leaders in fulfilling their battle fatigue identification and intervention
responsibilities. The team also assists in training leaders to recognize battle fatigue symptoms.
Unit ministry teams provide training in basic counseling skills for enabling soldiers to talk about
their stress.

D-2. Effects of Stress

Negative effects of stress can be lessened when the soldier is prepared physically, emotionally,
and spiritually prior to combat. The unit ministry teams prepare soldiers to manage combat stress
with training before and during deployment. This training helps the soldier to draw upon spiritual
strength and share strength and confidence during intensive combat.

D-3. Team Relationship

The unit ministry team's relationship with the unit promotes trust with the soldiers. Embedding
the team in maneuver battalions enables it to respond readily to the needs of soldiers
experiencing combat stress and battle fatigue. A person-oriented resource, the team gives
religious support to battle fatigue casualties, especially soldiers having less severe difficulties
who have rapid replenishment potential.

D-4. Spiritual Values

Soldiers' inner resources are often based on their religious and spiritual values. In combat,
soldiers show more interest in their religious beliefs. When religious and spiritual values are
challenged during the chaos of combat, soldiers may lose sight of inner resources that sustain
them. The soldiers then become targets of fear, despair, hopelessness, and eventually, battle
fatigue casualties. They are also at risk for committing misconduct stress behaviors. The unit
ministry team is the primary resource available to soldiers experiencing these dilemmas and
seeking to refocus their spiritual values.

D-5. Team Support

Unit ministry teams provide preventive, immediate, and replenishing spiritual and emotional
support and care to soldiers experiencing battle fatigue.

a. Preventive. The religious support mission of the unit ministry team assists in
preventing battle fatigue and misconduct stress behaviors through establishment of a
presence within the unit. It is important for the unit ministry team to be present with
soldiers when the unit trains and when it deploys. The unit ministry team can be a
calming influence on soldiers; the team can help soldiers strengthen or regain values
important to them. Some of the things the unit ministry team does to prevent battle
fatigue and misconduct include the following:

  • Being present with the soldiers and deploying with the unit.
  • Providing opportunities for private and group prayer and worship.
  • Providing personal religious articles and materials.
  • Reading the scriptures with soldiers.
  • Providing sacraments as the situation allows.
  • Communicating with soldiers, allowing them to work through stress, fear, anxiety,
    anger, and frustration.
  • Visiting soldiers in work and living areas.
  • Assisting soldiers and families prior to deployment with preparation for
    geographical separation and an uncertain future through programs which
    emphasize family strengths. This helps soldiers to know that their families are
    cared for during deployment.

b. Immediate. The unit ministry team assists commanders in the identification of soldiers
experiencing battle fatigue. They work closely with the unit leadership and the medical
personnel in battle fatigue care. Chaplains and chaplain assistants are trained to recognize
the signs of battle fatigue and provide religious support to soldiers experiencing battle
fatigue. The unit ministry team establishes rapport with the soldier and assesses his
religious needs. The team then performs or offers the type of religious support designed
to provide the most comfort. This includes such things as the following:

  • Presence with the soldier.
  • Conversation and an opportunity to share fears, hopes, and other feelings.
  • Prayers: general prayers, prayers for the individual, or prayers for fallen
  • Rites, sacraments, and ordinances as appropriate.
  • Reading from sacred scriptures.

c. Replenishing. Following an engagement, the unit may require reconstitution through
the addition of new personnel. The unit ministry team will find the surviving soldiers
may require a rebuilding of the emotional, psychological, and spiritual strength. During
this time, the unit ministry team may require assistance from a chaplain support team
(TOE 16500LA/B) or other available rear area unit ministry team assets. The team will
maintain its ongoing direct religious support functions which include the following:

  • Coordinating the availability of worship services, sacraments, rites, and services/
    ceremonies honoring the dead.
  • Facilitating the integration of personnel replacements.
  • Facilitating the grief process through personal counseling and memorial services.
  • Reinforcing the soldier's sense of self-worth and hope.
  • Structuring opportunities for soldiers to talk about what they have experienced in
    combat and facilitating integration of the combat experience into their lives.
  • Preparing for the next stage of battle.
  • Providing personal religious articles and materials.
  • Securing or providing denominational religious coverage in the unit or for other
  • Participating in rebuilding the physical, emotional, and spiritual resources of the

The unit ministry team operates with a soldier-focused approach to religious support. The
spiritual dimension the team brings to the soldier's situation is an essential element in the
replenishment process. Religious support assists the soldier in achieving emotional and spiritual

D-6. Reintegration

Following the end of hostilities, the unit ministry team facilitates reintegration of the individual
soldier into family relationships and society at large. Many religious support functions remain
the same. Expanded religious support functions may also include the following:

  • Providing worship events for the entire unit.
  • Providing worship events for varied religious denominations.
  • Providing briefings which help soldiers recognize, prepare for, and master the stressors of
    reunion with family.
  • Providing structured events to assist soldiers returning to family and civilian life.
  • Providing opportunities for soldiers to experience and understand the forgiving and
    unchanging love of God.



FM 22-51
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 - Overview of Combat Stress Control
Chapter 2 - Stress and Combat Performance
Chapter 3 - Postive Combat Stress Behaviors
Chapter 4 - Combat Misconduct Stress Behaviors
Chapter 5 - Battle Fatigue
Chapter 6 - Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Chapter 7 - Stress Issues in Army Operations
Chapter 8 - Stress and Stressors Associated with Offensive/Defensive Operations
Chapter 9 - Combat Stress Control in Operations other than War
Chapter 10 - War and the Integrated (Nuclear, Biological and Chemical) Battlefield
Chapter 11 - Prevention of Battle Fatigue Casualties and Misconduct Stress Behaviors

Appendix A - Leader Actions to Offset Battle Fatigue Risk Factors
Appendix B - Organization and Functions of Army Medical Department Combat Stress Control Units
Appendix C - United States Army Bands
Appendix D -The Unit Ministry Team's Role in Combat Stress Control and Battle Fatigue Ministry
Appendix E - Example Lesson Plan
Glossary - Abreviations and Acronyms
References - Sources Used


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