PUBLICIZING RELIGIOUS PROGRAMS
Public relations is an old art which has only recently become
It goes back to the earliest recorded history and
perhaps even before. The first man who became a leader of his tribal
group, unconsciously practiced public relations. Through his actions
he projected an image that others could accept and follow. As human
intelligence developed and man's reasoning powers increased, he
became more refined in his actions.
In the creation story recorded in Genesis, the serpent practiced
the basic steps of good public relations.
First, he had in mind a
well-defined message or idea that he wanted to project. Secondly, he
was aware of the characteristics of his public or target. Third, he
projected images of himself and his program to which people would
respond in a positive manner.
PUBLIC RELATIONS FOR THE UMT
The UMT's mission of ministering is very wide in its scope. The
chaplaincy in its purest form is people, not program centered.
However, programs are the means whereby needs which have been
identified through an assessment are addressed.
There are two
reasons which are frequently overlooked for the failure of a program,
in addition to poor planning, inadequate staffing, etc, they are:
insufficient advertising (publicity), and inadequate rapport (public
Prior to publicity, public relations (relationship
building, credibility affirming) must be laid as ground work.
The term "public relations" is raised in many fields, but the
term most closely related to the chaplaincy is "ministry of
It is that relationship building which occurs while the
chaplain walks through the motor pool, participates in field
exercises, eats in the dining facility, walks through the barracks,
participates in unit training (NBC, APRT)