From MP to Conscientious Objector
Have you ever wondered how a person can be transformed from a Westpoint-trained military
officer into a conscientious objector? Could it be reading scripture? Could it be taking one’s faith
more seriously? Or could it be the realization of living with an internal contradiction between the
call to love even our enemies and the training to kill them? Listen to this real-life tale of transformation.
Spencer is a Military Police officer turned pacifist and conscientious objector. Spencer is a
graduate from West Point and has his masters in biblical exposition. He began to think differently
about peacemaking through the disability community who taught him that God's love for all
people is grand and one centered on peace. Spencer began to read the words of Jesus who talks of
peace, love of enemy, and forgiveness through the eyes of marginalized people and decided he
could no longer serve in the military. He now is transitioning out of the Army and works for the
Center on Conscience and War as the director of development and is working as an intern for
RAWtools where they disarm hearts, forge peace, and cultivate justice.
Bill Galvin is the Counseling Coordinator at the Center on Conscience & War. He is a Vietnam
era conscientious objector. He has been working to support conscientious objectors since the
early 1970’s. He is active in the Presbyterian Church having served on the Peace & Justice
committee of the Baltimore Presbytery and their special task force to address urban violence.
Bill received the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship’s 2009 Peaceseeker Award. He is a graduate
of Princeton Theological Seminary and sits on the Executive Committee of the Presbyterian
Peace Fellowship. He worked with Spencer on the process of transitioning out of the Army.