JBER chaplains blitz flight line with candy canes
By Staff Sgt. N. Alicia Goldberger, 176 Wing
/ Published December 28, 2012
JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- Air Force and Alaska Air National Guard chaplains visited flight line workers Dec. 17-19 to hand out candy canes and good cheer.
During a 60-hour operation called Candy Cane Blitz, the base chapel team and other helping agencies, such as the Airmen and Family Readiness Center and the Mental Health Clinic, set out to greet all sections of the flight line with 3,000 peppermint candies in hand.
However, passing out candy canes was not the only objective.
"It had nothing to do with the candy canes," said Chaplain (Maj.) Rolf Holmquist, one of 673rd Airbase Wing's chaplains. "It was a resiliency assessment before the holidays."
According to Holmquist, the Candy Cane Blitz was an opportunity to remind Airmen of several organizations available to them 24/7, even during the holidays, and assess their morale and welfare. It did not matter if the members were active duty, Air Guard, civilians, or who their assigned chaplains were, the visiting chaplains and helping agencies wanted to greet them.
Candy Cane Blitz was a part of a ministry plan for the next year and the start of a series of "blitzes" for the chaplains and other helping agencies to reach every part of the flight line.
"We are strategic in the entire way we visit," Holmquist said. "There's a plan for the entire year so that we're consistent, we're concise, and we can track trends. We can track how people are doing."
Thanks to the chaplains, other helping agencies and off-base candy donors, Candy Cane Blitz was a success.