In your duties and responsibilities, you may come
across several different liturgical laws.
chaplain what governs his or her faith group, and which,
if any, of the guidelines you should be most familiar
with. Read those portions of the laws carefully and ask
your chaplain to clarify the sections you do not
Within the scope of this TRAMAN, it is not
practical for us to tell you about every requirement of
every Christian faith group you may encounter. Within
your personal assignments and capabilities, however,
you should pay particular attention to any changes in the
faith groups of the chaplains with whom you are
At times, you may not fully
understand the practices of a particular Christian faith
group. You should use these times as an opening to
begin a. dialogue with your chaplain. Through your
observations and questions, you will convey a message
that says, I am interested, and I want to know how I can
serve you and our sea service persons.
ESSENTIAL GEAR, GARMENTS, AND
In the acts of worship, the Christian churches use
many symbols including words, rites, gestures, prayers,
service books, sacred vessels, vestments, music, art, and
much more. Major themes of these rituals consist of joy,
penance, peace, thanksgiving, and the various virtues.
Symbols of Worship
Symbolism is the pervading speech of any living
religion. Because of persecutions, early Christians
made use of art and external acts to reflect inner
meanings and hid their beliefs from outsiders under
emblems and figures.
Most church art, architecture,
sacred rites, and private devotions have specific
In most Christian faith groups,
signs and symbols are material things that stand for
spiritual things. Christian worship makes use of signs,
symbols, vestments, and art to express the things of God.
In the Christian religion, the worship of God can be
expressed in the following four significant kinds of
1. Fact-filled symbols, such as the sacraments.
2. Natural symbols, such as washing, anointing, or
laying on of hands, to express a parallel event of
a spiritual nature, such as cleansing,
strengthening, or giving grace.
Illustration symbols, in which a certain
connotation is secured by a certain action or
Monograms or emblems, as a substitute for signs
that in some way depict a sacred truth.
Not all Christian churches accept the four types of
symbolism, and some churches accept none.
Nevertheless, symbolism is purposeful and necessary to
most Christian churches. You should, therefore, regard
symbolism as a serious element in the Christian faith.
Liturgical Gear and Objects
So numerous are the liturgical gear, garments, and
objects of the Christian faith that it would be impractical
for us to describe them all within the scope of this
chapter. For detailed information on Christian liturgical
gear and objects, please see appendix III.
Now that you have read about the Christian faith,
lets look at another major religion, Islam. Just as
Christianity began with the teachings of Jesus, Islam
began with the teachings of the prophet Mohammed. In
the following paragraphs, lets examine the world of
Islam and its believers, the followers of Mohammed.
Literally, Islam means submission to the will of
God. Islam also refers to the religion and to its
The people who believe in Islam are
followers of Mohammed, a great religious teacher
known as the Holy Prophet of Islam. This is why Islam
is often called Mohammedanism and the people who
follow it are called Mohammedans. Another word you
may encounter for the followers of Islam is Moslems or
Muslims, which means believers in Islam.
Of the great religions of the world, Islam is the
youngest. Islam began in Arabia about 600 years after
the birth of Jesus. Its founder, the prophet Mohammed,
was born in A.D. 570 and grew up in Mecca At the age
of 25, Mohammed wandered into the desert to
contemplate and pray. On Mount Hira, Mohammed
received the following revelations:
. There is only one God
God has revealed himself in the Bible