On December 4, 2015 we received the below announcement from MCA’s Executive Director Chaplain Lyman Smith.
CareForTheTroops (CFTT) has provided information and services to assist faith communities and ministries to develop veteran friendly work for more than eight years. Regrettably the time has come for CFTT to cease its activities by the end of 2015.
We are pleased to report, however, that the Veteran Friendly Congregation (VFC) program has been adopted by the Military Chaplains Association (MCA). This transition will permit the program to remain an interfaith effort. It will also add a national focus as the MCA, a congressionally chartered 501.c.3 non-profit with a 90-year history of service to military members, veterans and their families in both the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs provides ministry in all fifty states and all the commonwealths of our nation.
All Veteran Friendly Congregation materials will be transferred to the MCA website (www.mca-usa.org) within the next few weeks.
We thank the 90+ congregations that have signed up as VFCs, created outreach ministries, and developed activities that supported their communities’ effort to assist veterans and their families and to help ensure that veterans are appreciated for their service and sacrifice. We hope all of the existing VFCs will continue their work in partnership with the MCA.
Chaplain Lyman Smith
(Captain, Chaplain Corps, USN, Retired)
The Knoxville Regional Veterans Health Council will continue to encourage Veteran Friendly Congregations, Ministres and Organization and honored to partner with MCA.
God has blessed us again thanks to dedicated hard work by the Faith Based Community Committee Chairman Freddie Owens, Ron Morton, JL Tucker (deceased), Dan Moneymaker, Jessie Rivera, Dean Powell, Henry Cleveland, Bob Hatley and Dennis Lovin and the Veteran Next Door Host Randy Baxter. CareForTheTroops Executive Director Peter McCall, Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett, Assistant Commissioner Don Smith, CAC Executive Director Barbara Kelly, WBIR “Service and Sacrifice” Host John Becker, Knox County Veterans and Senior Service Director Robert “Buzz” Buswell, authors of “When War Comes Home” Rev. Christopher B. Adsit and Rev. Rahnella Adsit, Redemption Church Pastor Ed & Nora King, Maryville Vineyard Pastor Aaron McCarter and hundreds of other volunteers and supporters all were instrumental in our successful “When War Comes Home” Forum.
The Council’s VFC initiative is growing exponentially since we incorporated our Council’s “PTSD Awareness, Intervention, Resolution training” (PAIR) and the “Question, Persuade, Refer” veteran suicide prevention training (QPR) as part of our veteran outreach. All of our Legacy Peer Support Groups started as secular program. Since we added the Vet to Vet USA training model, The Adsit’s Christ-center solutions books, Battlemind training and the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit, we are proud to report that all of our peer support groups are faith based. Our peer support groups, PAIR & QPR training programs, and our Peer Facilitator and Veterans Treatment Court training programs begin and end with prayers.
The Council and Vet to Vet Tennessee has combined the VFC initiative, PAIR and QPR to provide as way to win “the toughest war the military has ever faced: Veteran & Military Suicide.
The next PAIR & QPR training is schedule for January 16, 2016 at our newest VFC, the Faith Lutheran Church in Hixson TN; Pastor Jon McKenzie. Currently scheduled to train between 50-100 community members.
Please take a moment to reflect on the blessings God has provided us and the countless veterans and their families who have been found and saved by the VFC initiative.
If you have any questions or comments please complete the form below.