Chaplain Paul Garcia was born in Colombia and raised in Texas. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in 1998 as an Intelligence Analyst. He was assigned to MAG-13 in Yuma, AZ where he served as an Intelligence Analyst. His next duty station was VMA-513 in Yuma, AZ where he served as the S-2 NCOIC. His awards include the Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, and the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal.
In July 2002, Chaplain Garcia was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps and then began his training for civilian ministry. He served as an assistant pastor while completing a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and a Bachelor of Arts in Biblical & Theological Studies from Nyack College. After graduation, Chaplain Garcia served as an ordained minister in the Christian & Missionary Alliance, serving in numerous roles at Risen King Alliance Church in Rockland County New York for 10 years. While serving as a pastor, Chaplain Garcia completed his Master of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary. In May 2021, Chaplain Garcia was selected for active duty Navy Chaplaincy. He was commissioned a lieutenant junior grade in the United States Navy Chaplain Corps and reported for training to Naval Chaplaincy School in Newport, Rhode Island.
WHY A CHAPLAIN?
Navy Chaplains have the incredible opportunity to serve alongside United States Marines. The ultimate responsibility of a Chaplain is to ensure each person’s constitutional right to the free exercise of religion. The Chaplain Corps does this through its’ four core functions: providing for the Chaplain’s own faith tradition; facilitating for others; caring for all – whether religious or not; and advising the command on issues pertaining to religion, ethics, and morale.
Perhaps the greatest tool the Chaplain brings to the table is 100% CONFIDENTIALITY. That means that WHATEVER is told to a military chaplain in their role as spiritual advisor by an authorized user, as an act of religion or matter of conscience, cannot be shared. This is a great responsibility, and one that your Chaplain does not take lightly.
Started in 1971, the mission of CREDO (Chaplains Religious Enrichment Development Operation) is to strengthen spiritual well-being and individual resilience through workshops and retreats for Department of the Navy service members, civilians, and families. Navy District Washington (NDW) offers two types of CREDO Retreats: Marriage Enrichment Retreats and Personal Resiliency Retreats. All retreats are free to attend, and do not provide childcare.