Herald Looks Like N.Y. Times to Me Now, Says Chaplain Justus

January 7, 1945

Due to delay in the malls during the holiday rush, The Herald got a week behind in its correspondence from Chaplain Kurt B. Justus at the Norfolk Naval Base. Therefore this week we publish two letters from the former local minister, one written on December 27, the other January 1.

By Chaplain K. B. Justus, USNR

Dear Friends: Sunday is here again and I’m waiting till time to go to Church, so I’ll write my letter to The Herald. By the way, I’ve ceased calling the Herald “the blabber”, because when I get it now it looks to me like The New York Times. Another week of lectures, exams and Navy routine has slipped by, and this time next week I will be some place beginning two weeks of student assignment. Where? I don’t know yet; maybe at sea, maybe right here, and maybe at some other shore station, but when I write next Sunday I’ll know.

I want to thank all the people and friends at Sykesville and Gaither for their lovely letters, Christmas cards, gifts and good will.  Mrs. Justus writes me that she has been showered with cards, and expressions of sympathy over her father’s death.  I am taking this opportunity to thank you, on the behalf of both of us, for the manifestation of your love in kindness. I talked to Vaneta and Fritzie on Christmas eve, after waiting an hour and a half to get my call through. It was good to hear their voices. Fritzie is eight years old today.

I am getting along very well, and am anxious to get out and see what I can do. One never knows where he may be sent; he can be sent to the Marines, The Naval Air Service, or directly to Navy assignments. We made a tour of the Naval Air Station here the other day. It is the largest in the world and is really something to see.

A man from Jimmie Richards circuit dropped in last night for some advice. I’ve also seen Pennel Jester and Ken Barnes, Jr. Had letters from Gene Morris and Charlie Gaither. Now as I close I wish you all a Happy New Year, and pray that in this New Year God may see fit to bring final and complete victory to the arms of the Allies, and bring the peace of the Christ of Christmas, the Christ of Calvary and the Christ of the Open Tomb to this bleeding and weary world. God bless you all.

Saturday, Jan. 2, 1943

“Well, a New Year has come again, and I’m sure the prayer and hope of us all is that it may bring freedom to the world and peace and justice for all. I’m writing my note to the Herald today because I’ll be busy on the Sabbath. I am helping to conduct communion at one of the large Methodist Churches in Norfolk tomorrow morning and will speak at the same Church in the evening.

Since I last wrote you I have had a break and am living under more favorable conditions. On Wednesday of this week I moved from the Chaplain’s Barracks to the officer’s quarters. There are two of us in a room with all the comforts of home, and it really makes things different.

Today finished my third week of classes, and my class has dispersed to all points of the compass for two weeks of student assignment with active chaplains. Some of us have received assignments right here on the base, and I was one of those, so I do not have to bother moving. I am on my own and have received the very interesting assignment of visiting all the ships that come in here at the base, going aboard to offer any of the services that a chaplain can perform. It is a splendid opportunity for service and for experience.

I had a letter from Dr. Woof this week and was happy to learn that Rev. Paul is going to supply the charge till Conference time. I know you will be in good hands and it makes me feel like I have some little connection with the church yet, which I shall always think of as “my parish.” May God bless you all, and Happy New Year. Before I write next week I will have had many new experiences.”

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