Father Scott Gratton, a priest of the Diocese of Burlington currently serving as a chaplain with the Vermont National Guard in Saudi Arabia, has been promoted to the rank of captain.

In an April 7 letters to parishioners of Our Lady of the Valley Parish in Bethel and Rochester and Our Lady of the Angels Parish in Randolph — where he had been serving before his deployment — Father Gratton said he has been busy in Saudi Arabia, traveling to visit soldiers and bring them religious support.

“No matter what happens; no matter how long the distance may be; no matter the length of time — remember that our strength comes from the Eucharist and that our God binds us to His Heart every time we dare to approach the altar,” he wrote. “The Lord has bound our hearts together in the Eucharist, so do not miss me too much, for I am already there with you, sitting at the feet of Christ, waiting, with you, to follow Him wherever He leads next.”

Father Gratton asked parishioners to stay close to the sacraments, which give strength. “Please stay close to Sacred Scripture, for it is the love letter that Our Lord has left for us. Please stay close to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, for it provides the rock of Truth (capital T, Truth) that we believe amidst the conflicting interpretations and wishes of different people in our modern world,” he wrote. “Finally, stay close to me on this deployment, and know that I carry you with me wherever I go.”