VA PTSD Resource for Clergy and Police Officers

VA Chaplain Ron Skaggs notified us of another good site to add to our resource for clergy helping Vets and educating churches.   You can view the new site by clicking here and it is not added to the VA resource list in our main menu.

The information is provided by the National Center for PTSD and includes general information on Community Violence, Veterans with PTSD in the Justice System, Journalists and PTSD, Media Coverage of Traumatic Events: Research on Effects, and Spirituality and Trauma: Professionals Working Together.

The site also includes a Clergy Toolkit and a Police Officer Toolkit: PTSD and Military Veterans.

Please take advantage of these great resources and know that the VA loves, services and honor our Veterans.  And don’t forget to thank them for their service and sacrifice.

Welcome to Mental Health and Chaplaincy

Mental Health and Chaplaincy is a national initiative that aims to achieve a more collaborative system of care for the benefit of Veterans, Service members, and their families. Emotional, social, psychological, and spiritual needs are interconnected – the professionals and communities that attend to these needs should be coordinated and integrated for optimal care. Mental Health and Chaplaincy seeks to foster this care through a range of educational, research, clinical training, and community outreach activities.

The brief video below highlights faith community and clergy outreach offerings, and we invite you to further explore the site to learn more about our other areas of programmatic engagement.

Click here to view more videos and training opportunities.

MCA Weekly Newsgram

August 8, 2018

Executive Director Notes  

It appears that August will be a month with a number of meetings with some at least three sets of our colleagues: First, the VA chaplains will be having a convocation from 14 thru 16 August in Arlington, and MCA plans to have a representative dropping by to provide our greetings and support for our colleagues in this remarkable chaplaincy.

That will be followed by meeting with Civil Air Patrol chaplains at the national CAP conference at the Marriott Anaheim Convention Center, which will be the first time that I’ll be attending the national conference of this distinguished group of colleagues. At the end of the month I’ll be meeting with the president of Vet to Vet Tennessee, Ed Junod, who is representing one of our strategic partners with the Veteran Military Friendly Congregations (VMFC).

Additionally, I’m going through a roster of our members in Western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee with the goal of having a gathering of members who are within about a 45 minute drive of Asheville this Fall. That said, I have heard from a number of your already, and feel free to email me to let me know if you are still in the area and we’ll start the process of pulling together an inaugural gathering of our membership in the metro Asheville area.

As always, if there is anything we can do for you to provide support for you do not hesitate to let me know by emailing me at RazzW@aol.com.

Fr. Razz Waff, DMin, BCC

RazzW@aol.com

Cell: 847-269-9066

Suicidal veterans lives with help from Veteran/Military Friendly Congregation and Veterans Court

Monroe County Veterans Court, Madisonville, Tennessee

A high risk suicidal justice involved veteran graduate gives thanks to God, Monroe County Veterans Court Judge Thomas, Helen Ross McNabb Military Services Center Clinical Therapist Tony Weaver, VA Knoxville Outpatient Clinic Debbie Cohan & Christy Cook, Vet to Vet Tennessee (VTVT) mentors and Pastor Chris Moore, First Baptist Church of Madisonville for saving his life.

Robert retired from the US Air Force after 20 years and 9 months of honorable service and is a past VFW Post Commander.  Robert entered the program on January 25, 2018 and needed much more than legal help.

[read more=”Click here to Read More” less=”Read Less”] During Robert’s intake, VTVT realized that he needed immediate professional help.  Help that couldn’t wait.  Before finishing the intake, VTVT took Robert to see VA Suicide Prevention Coordinator Debbie Cohan.  One comment Robert repeated said was “I am tired of hurting.”

McNabb’s Clinical Therapist Tony Weaver summed up Robert’s status in a email  he sent to VTVT.

“I am very excited to inform you that R.B. has completed the goals of his treatment plan at Helen Ross McNabb Military Services.  Since admittance into this program the transformation R.B. has undergone has been incredibly awe-inspiring if not, nothing short of a miraculous turn around.  

During his intake, I heart-wrenchingly listened to R.B.’s words as they reflected absolute and utter hopelessness and dejection.  Hearing him talk, his future outlook was one of the bleakest I had ever heard.  His final words to me that day before slowly exiting my office captured the very essence of his mind as he reported, “I’m tired of hurting.  This is something nobody can fix; I’m stuck with it.”  R.B. added, “I don’t think this (treatment) will work . . . but I am willing to try.”  I am so very glad he tried. 

After much effort, time, and extremely painful processing, R.B. now reports that he has found “genuine happiness” and that, “Everything is so joyful.”  I attribute this dramatic transformation to his new-found faith in God, the patient yet persistent work of Veteran’s Affair’s therapist Christy Cook, and the work R.B. has completed in this program.  His travels have just begun down this new pathway but I am nonetheless, convinced his best days are yet ahead of him.”   

During the ceremony, Robert thanked everyone especially God for saving his life.  He said his life dramatically changed when he volunteered at VTVT’s Expungement Clinic hosted Veteran/Military Friendly Congregation First Baptist Church of Madisonville as he worked alongside of Pastor Moore.

God bless you Robert!  Thanks for the hard work and for living.

Click here to view more graduation photos.

VMFCs make a difference.  We encourage you to enroll in the Military Chaplains Association VMFC network.  Click here to enroll.[/read]

 

MCA’s Weekly Newsgram – July 11th 2018

Executive Director Notes

 

This week’s column focuses on the Veteran Military Friendly Congregation Ministry of the MCA (VMFC). This ministry we inherited nearly two years ago has shown some remarkable growth in the last two months, thanks to the great teamwork of CH Ron Skaggs, working with Everett Price of the Episcopal Church’s Brotherhood of St Andrew, Ed Junod, the President of Vet to Vet Tennessee and Jack Figel, the MCA Deputy Executive Director.

More congregations are stepping up to the plate to join in this effort, and you can go directly to their website, www.vmfc-usa.org, to see the current updates of who the new congregations are, which will also soon be available as a  link directly from the MCA website. [read more=”Click here to Read More” less=”Read Less”] 

I know of at least two congregations who would be great additions to this list, one in northern Virginia, and one in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, and those are ones that immediately jump to mind. If you have any suggestions for congregations that would be a good fit, please contact Ron at 1stSgtSkaggs@gmail.com, Everett Price at evpricega@yahoo.com or Ed Junod at ejunod@tnvhc.org .

I will next be attending the joint annual meeting the end of this week of The Association of Professional Chaplains (APC) and The National Association of Catholic Chaplains (NACC) in Anaheim,. Representing MCA beside myself will be our President, Chaplain Mike Langston, and Chaplain Jan McCormack. I will report back next week on what is happening with the advanced certification for profession military chaplains, and some of what Jan, Mike and I have done on behalf of MCA while we are there.

Click here to view the entire newsgram.

Fr. Razz Waff, DMin, BCC

RazzW@aol.com

Cell: 847-269-9066

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VA Chaplain Service available since 1865

Veterans are 10 times more likely to go to clergy than all other Mental Health Providers. The VA Chaplain Service has been providing this service since 1865 and is an instrumental component of mental and spiritual health.

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Chaplains:

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