Dear Chaplains and Some Commanders,
Al Lowe from Texas named National Chaplain of the Year (see the below picture of Al receiving his award)
Earning his VFW eligibility in Vietnam, Chaplain Lowe served as an infantry man with the 4th Infantry Division from 1966 to 1967. In 1982, after graduating from University of Kentucky, Al obtain his MDiv. degree from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville Kentucky, and followed that with a DMin. Degree from Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, PA. Then in 1985 he returned to active duty in United States Army as a Chaplain, and in 2004 he served in Iraq.
Al is a life member of VFW post 4008 in Belton, Texas where he serves as the post chaplain. He is also chaplain for District 14. In June of 2017, he was elected as Chaplain for the Department of Texas. Chaplain Lowe’s main goal is to teach Chaplains how to be Chaplains, and not just fill a position. He wrote a “Chaplains Help Book” and also developed a Suicide Awareness program and guide book. Congratulations Chaplain Lowe on being named National Chaplain of the Year!
Special Note: Last year’s recipient, Rex Smith from Oregon, and this year’s recipient, Al Lowe from Texas, received their awards at their State Convention. My goal is to see this award presented on the floor of the National Convention by the National Chaplain.
119th VFW National Convention
I am looking forward to seeing many of you at the National Convention in Kansas City, MO July 21-25. On Tuesday afternoon there is a Chaplains Workshop from 2:00-4:00 pm led by our National Chaplain Rev. James Gray. This is really our only time to get together as a group so don’t miss it.
New Joint Memorial Service to be used again at National Convention
Shortly after CIC Brian Duffy took office, he authorized the development of a new joint Memorial Service. The new Memorial Service Script was used in 2017 and was well received. Therefore, CIC Harman desired that it be used again this year. Attached is a copy of this year’s Memorial Service Script.
Online Reporting System for Chaplains
The online reporting system for Chaplains seems to be working well. Simply click on this link and it will take you directly to the report. VFW Chaplains are encouraged to report their activity at the beginning of each month using this new reporting system. Once you submit your report you will receive an email that lists all the data that you submitted. That email can then be forwarded to you State Chaplain or Department if your state has a reporting system in place. Again, to submit your Chaplain’s Report please use this link and provide as much detailed information as possible. Don’t forget to hit SUBMIT at the bottom of the form. The Chaplain’s Report can also be accessed by going to vfwpahq.org. Once there, go to District/Post Tools and you will see Chaplain’s Guide. The link is on my Chaplain’s Page in the second paragraph.
VA Should be Notified When a Veteran Passes Away
The VA has established a process for family, executors, and legal representatives to follow to notify VA about the death of a veteran enrolled in the VA health care system. Look at the attached document for the details. Also, your VFW Department, and the VFW National Online Membership, should be notified by your post quartermaster when a comrade passes away.
Three things never to say to those who have lost a loved one
For Chaplains serving in PA: I look forward to seeing some of you at the OTI’s which will take place in August at various locations throughout the State. Please let me know if there is something particular that you would like me to address.
Resources for Chaplains: Check out my Chaplain’s Page at the PA Department Web Site – vfwpahq.org Just look under District/Post Tools and you will see Chaplain’s Guide. I continue to update the page and have posted a number of items you may find helpful as you continue to serve those who serve. If you have something that would benefit others in our network, please send it to me.
Blessings as you serve,
Rev. Peter R. Hook
Past National Chaplain
Eastern Conference Chaplain
PA State Chaplain
Veterans of Foreign Wars
534 Parkvale Ave.
Langhorne, PA 19047
2017 1122 National Chaplain of the Year Award.pdf156.3kB
2018 National Chaplain Event Planned.pdf79.7kB
2018 National Chaplain Event Announcement.pdf42.9kB
2018 0119 National Chaplain Event Registration Sheet.pdf80.1kB
Discerning Good and Evil.pdf114kB
VFW Report of Deceased Member (003).pdf37.5kB
VFW Report of Deceased Member.docx105.7kB