McConnell Chapel Introduces New Spaces for Well-being and Diversity

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Adam Goodly
  • 22nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

The Chapel at McConnell Air Force Base has recently introduced new spaces, including a meditation room, two conference rooms, and a prayer room, reflecting a commitment to holistic well-being and diverse spiritual practices.

"The inspiration behind establishing the new rooms within the Chapel was to improve the utilization of our facilities for the well-being of Airmen from various faiths," said Capt Jacob Wilde, 22nd Air Refueling Wing chaplain. “The creation of a resiliency room with massage recliners, and a prayer and meditation room equipped with resources like yoga mats aims to address the mental and emotional well-being of service members and their families.”

"One of the wing Lines of Effort is to 'Ensure McConnell AFB infrastructure enables mission success and pride in the installation,'” stated Lt Col Roland Reitz, 22nd ARW head chaplain. “COVID impacted how, and how much, the chapel facility was being utilized. The team recognized the opportunity to better align space utilization with new realities, emphasizing the importance of warrior heart and resiliency.”

The resiliency room, along with other spaces at the chapel, facilitates the development and enablement of Airmen by providing resources for building resiliency. This space serves as a dedicated area for Airmen to relax, de-stress, and rebuild internal strength, ensuring they can effectively accomplish the mission.

The rooms at the Chapel play a crucial role in promoting self-care and well-being among Airmen, contributing to a supportive and nurturing environment for individuals of all backgrounds. These spaces serve as a tactical pause on an individual level, providing an opportunity for Airmen to prioritize self-care within the McConnell Air Force Base community.

The prayer and meditation room is specifically designed to offer a dedicated space for members of various faiths to practice their beliefs. Open to everyone, this room accommodates diverse religious practices, providing a quiet environment suitable for prayer, meditation, and reflection. It serves as a place where individuals can engage in spiritual activities, fostering a sense of inclusivity within the McConnell Air Force Base community.

In terms of amenities, the resiliency room features massage chairs, yoga mats, and a calming waterfall, while the prayer and meditation room include various resources such as prayer mats, devotional books, and miniature Zen gardens.

"The upgrades that have been made, and which continue to be made, are intended to make chapel spaces more usable, useful, and helpful for individuals and for squadrons and groups to use," said Ch Reitz. “Currently, the rooms are open during 7:30 AM - 4:30 PM when chapel team members are in the building. However, if one wants to use the rooms outside of those hours, they can reserve the space and check out a key.”

The chapel team invites all members of McConnell Air Force Base to explore the newly upgraded spaces and discover how they can contribute to the well-being and resilience of the community.