MINOT AIR FORCE BASE One of the newest additions to the Minot Air Force Base chapel team is Capt. Mark McGregor, 5th Bomb Wing chaplain and former film production professor.
As a Catholic priest for more than 15 years and a professor for seven years, he said he decided to join the military because he continually noticed the burden service members and their families endured year after year. He said he felt a real sense of the pride in the excellence and hard work of the military and there was a deeper call to listen to.
"I often wondered - who can help military members when they need spiritual support?" said McGregor. "I looked at my life experience and I said I could do it."
Submitted Photo • One of the newest additions to the Minot Air Force Base chapel team is Capt. Mark McGregor, 5th Bomb Wing chaplain and former film production professor, shown in this photo by Airman 1st Class Jose L. Hernandez.
McGregor said in the past he had spent more than four years in an underprivileged Los Angeles community at a parish there. During that time he worked in a juvenile hall for more than three years and met many young immigrants that were predominantly from Latin America.
"I noticed their experience was quite a difficult journey," said McGregor. "I was able to help and see through their spiritual journey though."
Just as he was able to help those in need there, McGregor hopes he can bring his ministerial life and skills on base and also become involved in the lives of airmen. Wherever he finds himself he likes to get to know his surroundings and explore what the community has to offer.
He explained as a film professor he enjoyed hearing the stories others had to tell and he hopes he can go behind the scenes, visiting with people to learn about their different jobs.
"We have a very complicated and a very important essential mission here on the base and it's pretty taxing for people to have all this readiness," said McGregor. "I want to provide support and spiritual care for everybody on base."
McGregor said he believes when people can find their place and meaning within a community, they realize they can overcome any difficulties they may be faced with. He said he not only would work to help and bring the catholic community together, but provide leadership as well.
"One of the first chaplains in Air Force recruiting that I spoke with talked with such energy and excitement about working in Minot," said McGregor. "I remember the priest's energy and enthusiasm and I want to experience it as well."
Even though McGregor said he was still settling in and getting accustomed to the area, he is already prepping different events and programs for the community to enjoy including a Christmas potluck and movie nights.