Chaplain of the Coast Guard Fired for 'Loss of Confidence' After Not Acting on Case of Sexual Misconduct

U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Daniel Mode, Chaplain of the U.S. Coast Guard, celebrates Catholic Mass
U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Daniel Mode, Chaplain of the U.S. Coast Guard, celebrates Catholic Mass, at the Shrine of St. Therese, with other Philippine Chief Chaplains of various armed and uniformed services, in Manila, Nov. 30, 2023. (Donald Keim/U.S. Coast Guard)

The Coast Guard's top chaplain was removed from his duties Wednesday as a result of a "loss of confidence" in his ability to fulfill his duties, according to the service.

Capt. Daniel Mode, who had served as Chaplain of the Coast Guard since 2022, failed to take action when he was made aware of sexual misconduct by another chaplain that had taken place prior to the other chaplain joining the Navy and serving in the Coast Guard's chaplain corps, according to the Coast Guard.

The U.S. Navy provides chaplains to the Coast Guard, and Mode is a Navy officer.

Read Next: Navy Authorizes Combat Awards for Sailors in the Red Sea Following Months of Attacks by Houthi Rebels

An administrative investigation "revealed that Capt. Mode's decisions and actions did not demonstrate the judgment required of a senior leader and Chaplain of the Coast Guard," the Coast Guard said in an email statement to

The chaplain involved in the sexual misconduct is no longer on active duty.

Mode began his Navy career in 1988 as a chaplain candidate, concurrent with his studies to become a Roman Catholic priest. He was ordained in 1992 in the Diocese of Arlington, Virginia, and subsequently served in various pastoral roles in Virginia while also serving in the Navy Reserve.

As a member of the reserve component, Mode was assigned to Bethesda Naval Hospital, Maryland; Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia; and Joint Task Force 76 in Bagram, Afghanistan, during Operation Enduring Freedom.

In June 2007, he entered active duty with assignments to the carrier USS Harry S. Truman in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom; the George Washington Strike Group; and as command chaplain at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Mode is the author of "The Grunt Padre," a biography of Father Vincent Capodanno, a Navy chaplain who earned the Medal of Honor during the Vietnam War.

He was the 12th Chaplain of the Coast Guard.

According to the service, Mode will be reassigned to the Navy Chaplain Corps with duties outside the Coast Guard. Navy Capt. Richard Ryan, the chaplain for the Coast Guard's Atlantic Area, will temporarily assume the position until a permanent replacement is found.

The service said the investigation found that Mode's conduct did not violate any laws or policies requiring punitive action but was "rather a failure of judgment below what is expected from his key leadership position."

Coast Guard officials deferred to the Navy as to whether any administrative actions would be taken against Mode.

Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Linda Fagan has pledged to hold service officials to higher standards when handling cases of sexual harassment and assault following the cover-up of investigations into cases of sexual assault at the Coast Guard Academy that spanned decades.

The investigation, dubbed Operation Fouled Anchor, uncovered 60 substantiated cases of rape, sexual assault and harassment at the school, many of which were never prosecuted. Results of that investigation only came to light following extensive media reporting by CNN.

Related: 'Culture of Cover-Up:' Senators Ratchet Up Pressure on Coast Guard After It Hid Report on Rapes, Sexual Assaults

Story Continues