Dear Venture Christian Church and the American Troops Project,

Good morning! I am Navy chaplain [name concealed for security purposes] currently deployed aboard the USS SIMPSON (FFG-56). I received the support packages you sent out this Christmas and I wanted to say THANK YOU! I distributed the packages during a Christmas Day Giveaway and have attached some photos of the event. It was a huge hit with the sailors and they were very thankful for all that y'all did for them.

For many this was the 2nd and 3rd Christmas away from home in a row and this was the first time they had ever had anyone do anything like this for them. I can't say enough how grateful I am for your generosity and kindness to those away from home this time of year. I've also attached some photos of the Christmas Eve Candlelight service I held on board this year.

God bless you!

[Name removed for security reasons]
Dear American Troops Project,

Thank you for your support in this LONG war! Much appreciated of GREAT AMERICANS that are sticking with Soldiers that are still here serving in Afghanistan. I have seen this place so much more than I ever expected.

I love Twizzlers. Yes, the first thing that came to my mind. Also if you are able to provide a Pastoral Care or Pastoral Leadership type of book from Family Christian Book store, I'd really enjoy that also.

I enjoy running also, so maybe a copy of Runners World with be great. I have to run off those Twizzlers! Especially here during long deployments, fitness and running REALLY helps me stay motivated and active in my ministry.

Finally, prayer for me and my family would be MUCH appreciated. I will attach a photo so you can see us all. The Lord has blessed me with a great family that my wife and I have an incredible time with! It is very hard being away from them, but we all know this is what the Lord wants from us at this time. Still tough though.

Thank you very much! Here is my mailing address:

[Name removed for security reasons]
Venture Christian Church & American Troops Project,

Thank you, and the church there, so very much for sending the packages that we received today!

I am particularly grateful for the Sermon CDs that you included. Because of our congested internet network, onboard, downloading any audio files either takes hours, or cannot be accomplished at all.

We appreciate your prayers, particularly for marital fidelity and the wisdom of our Commanders to balance the responsibility of heeding orders AND giving orders.

Again; thanks, so much.

Very Respectfully,
Chaplain USS COLE (DDG-67)
SUBJECT: 1-22 IN BN Chaplain Thanks American Troops Project

I would like to personally thank you for your generous gifts to the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment currently serving overseas at Camp Buehring, Kuwait. We are a combined arms battalion stationed out of Ft. Carson, CO and have been "on ground" in support of Operation Spartan Shield.

I am the battalion chaplain, and we recently received packages that were from your organization. It is always exciting to get mail while deployed. Your accompanying letters were encouraging and we are thankful for your prayers and concern.

We truly appreciate your patriotism and generosity. The types of items that you sent were spot on for what Soldiers readily use. These items will not go to waste. In fact the items you sent are the most requested and in demand.

I have a place in my office that I compile care package items and keep open for Soldiers to come grab stuff daily.

Thanks again - Regulars, by God! Deeds, not words!

[Name removed for security purposes]


Battalion Chaplain
Dear Friends,

My time here in Afghanistan is quickly drawing to an end and I wanted to write you today to express my appreciation for all the incredible support you have sent our way! I'm continually amazed to see the evidence of America's support for all of us serving over here! Just yesterday I received 10 large boxes stuffed full of blessings, which we shared until everything was gone in only a few hours!

Although I am departing, my Soldiers of the 25th Signal Battalion are not. I thank God that [my replacement] will be arriving shortly to continue this ministry and I humbly ask for your continued support. Although President Obama has ordered a drawdown of US military personnel here, please remember there will be almost 10,000 serving here still. Please continue to support them!

May God bless you! Happy Thanksgiving!

"By God's grace, never unprepared, always ready!"

CH (CPT) [Name removed for security purposes]

25th Signal Battalion Chaplain

Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan
Hello Venture Christian Church and the American Troops Project team,

I am TASK FORCE WARRIOR Battalion Chaplain [Name removed for security purposes]. I am deployed and have over 1,200 Soldiers under my care. If possible, may I ask some support packages for my Soldiers during holiday season? It would be very appreciated with your support and prayers.

Thank you in advance.

God's Blessings,

Battalion Chaplain
Task Force Warrior 2-43 ADA
Dear Church

I am the command chaplain for the Special Operations Joint Task Force – Afghanistan in Kabul. Yesterday I received a few boxes from you all in support of me and my military and civilian personnel out here in Afghanistan. I am humbled that you all would sacrifice your time and your resources to send support packages out here to people you do not even know. Rest assured, the elements in the boxes will be given out to all my soldiers on Camp Integrity. In my office we have several bins in which we put food, toiletry, and other support items sent to us from people and organizations back home. Every day dozens and dozens of soldiers make their way through my office to grab some coffee and check the box to see if there is something they would like to have or may need.

When soldiers come through here and pick up the supplies you all and others send, it is a reminder to them that they are not forgotten out here. The war in Afghanistan has been going for almost 14 years and it is very easy for the people back home to forget what we are doing here. Your support is a simple reminder that people back home still care greatly about all the soldiers deployed and eagerly await their return home.

This is my 5th deployment and 3rd time in Afghanistan. Whenever I deploy, I always bathe the weeks and months in preparation in prayer and continue that prayer throughout my time here. The Lord has been so unbelievably good to me and has kept me safe for so long. I know the Lord watches over me as said so in Psalm 91. And I also know that I would be unable to make it through each day without knowing God as my personal savior and having so many people pray for me.

I pray the Lord richly blesses you all for your sacrificial giving and support not just of me, but of all the military service members and contract civilians that are deployed here in Afghanistan. Pray for our safety, alertness and quick, safe return home.

In His Grip!

[Name removed for security purposes]

Command Chaplain

NATO Special Operations Component Command - Afghanistan

Special Operations Joint Task Force - Afghanistan
Dear American Troops Project, Venture Christian Church,

I wanted to pass along a hearty THANK YOU to you all for your boxes I received today. I have ENJOYED several of the goodies already and will definitely indeed share the "love" with my Soldiers.

Let me tell you about myself and my unit here. I am a Brigade Chaplain who supervises several battalion chaplains under me. We are in an Air Defense Artillery Brigade which provides protection of our American assets all throughout the Middle East from the Iranian and Syrian missile threats.

As Thanksgiving and Christmas approach it becomes harder for us to be away from our families. Boxes like this remind us that we are loved and prayed for! And as a Chaplain, I am grateful that when I hand these things out I can remind Soldiers that people of faith are praying for them and love them!

So thank you all for loving on myself and my unit. The tastes from home are wonderful and the things like Christmas decorations will come in handy!

Thanks for your ongoing offers of help. If you ever want to send any more boxes my way I can use them and share then with a Marine unit I cover, as well as another Army Chaplain who works for me here. All of it will be well used and will help us minister.

Thank you so much Helen [a supporter who packed one of the boxes] for the sweet Christmas card too! I have it hung up in my office already. Yes indeed, the treats will help us share the joy of Christmas with others.

And thank you too Carrie [10 year old supporter] for your sweet little note and for packing my box so nicely! I have your note on my wall too! My youngest is 11 almost 12 so I can just picture you packing away! It makes me smile to think of you and your parents enjoying Thanksgiving and Christmas together. Please enjoy them and give them hugs and kisses! Family is such a blessing. I know being away from my family makes me miss them a lot and I'm so thankful to God for blessing me with them.
I have included a picture of my family so you can see them too.

Again, thank you all,
[Name removed for security purposes]

Brigade Chaplain, FORWARD
108th Air Defense Artillery Brigade
AUAB, Qatar