Program Manual

Veterans and Military Outreach

Antonio Tido Peralez – Committeeman

We are continuing to expand our state-wide efforts in bringing a Veteran Outreach Veteran Affairs Volunteer Service (V.A.V.S.) program to the Texas State Council.  By describing our existing program in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, I hope to motivate you to start such an outreach in your area. 

Our brother Knights in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston visit the V.A. hospital on Sunday morning to help the V.A. Chaplain visiting our Catholic veterans.  The Chaplain provides the Knights with a list of Catholic veterans to be visited and this is what we do.  We take them to the chapel if they are able to attend Mass. We assist them in viewing the Mass on the in-house channel if they cannot make it to the chapel. Our brother Knights also have a chance to visit with our hero - veterans as we share stories. We laugh with them and we cry with them.  Most of all, we pray for them along with any veterans of other faiths who are there asking for our prayers.  We deny our faith outreach to no one. 
Our Knights also go to veteran clinics, Texas State Veterans Homes, retirement homes, and residences. The idea is that these heroes sacrificed so much for us to be free; visiting with them is the least we can do for them.
Your V.A. Hospital has veterans of all ages coming from all over the United States for treatment. The majority of these veterans are lonely, and they have no one except for the medical staff to be with them. 
These veterans are eager to be visited by the Knights of Columbus. They smile when they see our council brothers coming inside the door.   We bring our wives, sons, daughters, (13 years of age or older) and friends. Some councils bring Get Well cards, Easter cards from neighboring elementary schools, and Christmas cards with them. We try to personalize the cards by writing the veteran’s name on the card utilizing the visitation list provided by the Chaplain.

The Outreach Program starts with you.  Join with our hero men and women, first responders, EMS, police, and fire fighters by going out and visiting with the veterans. Only you can make a difference in their life – and yours - by doing your part.  
Why is Veterans Outreach so important?  Consider these statistics:
Currently we have 320 active Catholic Chaplains nation-wide
Out of the 320 Chaplains we have the following:
Less than 100 Chaplains on Full Time Duty
Less than 50 Chaplains on Part Time Duty
The remaining 170 are on contract/Fee basis
To find the local VA Medical Facility in your area, simply Google (Texas – Locations – US Department of Veterans Affairs) for a listing of hospitals and medical facilities.
To aid in your local effort, please make use of this list of contacts throughout the State to get started:

Veterans Health Administration Chaplain Offices
Amarillo, 806-355-9703
Big Spring, 432-263-7361
Bonham,  800-924-8387
Dallas, 214-742-8387
El Paso, 915-564-6100
Harlingen,  956-291-9000
Houston, 713-794-1414
Kerrville, 866-487-1653
San Antonio, 210-617-5300
Waco, 254-752-6581 
Remember that we represent Charity, Unity, Fraternity and Patriotism


2017-2018 Star Guide

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