This week marked the 240th birthday of the Army Chaplain Corps. The military chaplain is an indispensable tool for our soldiers. Far too often their work goes unnoticed, but these selfless heroes provide spiritual guidance and ministry for our men and women in uniform. I urge you to join me in thanking our military chaplains for their vital role in keeping our nation safe and our troops grounded.
In connection with this anniversary and the #FaithitForward initiative, I'd like to tell you a short story about retired Army Chaplain Harold T. Carlson and what a military Chaplain can provide for our service men and women.
While serving in Alaska in 1991, a unit where Carlson was stationed was in the middle of an exercise. To say it was cold is a great understatement. These troops were operating in 70-degrees-below-zero conditions as a C-130 Hercules was landing. The nose of the plane came in too low and the plane, with 18 crew members on board, crashed. The temperature, though brutally cold was actually in favor of those involved, as jet fuel doesn't explode in temperatures colder than 42 degrees below zero.
As the soldiers who were on board were being brought in for treatment, Carlson dutifully did his part to help. He began to minister to those involved and praying for the best of outcomes. Interestingly, as he approached one of the victims, a Canadian who only spoke French, Carlson was faced with a bit of a language barrier. Carlson had taken some French in high school and college but was not fluent. Mustering up as much as he could remember from those basic courses, Carlson simply began repeating "God loves you" in French. The incident happened late in a bitter winter evening and unfortunately took the lives of nine soldiers. Though late, and despite all grim reminders of the ultimate sacrifice, Carlson stayed through the night into the early morning hours to provide grief counseling for soldiers and their families.
Carlson is a shining example of the selfless service and support chaplains provide for the brave men and women who protect this nation. I am humbled by his service and proud to have had him serve at our own Fort Leonard Wood, where he retired in 2005.Read More
After the financial collapse in 2008, in an effort to rein in the power of banks considered “too big to fail,” Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform bill, applying new regulations to the financial sector. Five years after its implementation, however, Dodd-Frank continues to do the opposite of what it proposed, consolidating financial assets and power in Wall Street at the expense of those on Main Street.
One of the primary reasons for Dodd-Frank’s failure is the faulty premise that financial deregulation caused the crisis. The cause was the poor quality of regulations, not the quantity. Dodd-Frank compounded the problem, imposing a host of new regulations without differentiating a trans-national global bank from your local credit union.
Not accounting for the fact that a local credit unions’ needs may differ from, say, Goldman Sachs’, Dodd-Frank turned “too big to fail” into “too small to succeed.” To that point, facing an additional $1 million in Dodd-Frank regulatory burdens, the owners of Shelter Financial Bank in Columbia decided it was too costly for the bank to run profitably. In September 2012, Shelter Financial closed its doors.
Dodd-Frank has resulted in a loss of a valuable source of business capital. It has made it tougher for low- and moderate-income Americans to secure a mortgage to buy a home. It has even curtailed or eliminated some bank services, such as free checking, that we used to take for granted. Further, this policy is still forcing smaller banks across the nation to either close or merge with larger banks—exacerbating the problem by forcing more money into bigger banks.
Small banks are closely tied to communities, serving their neighbors and friends with whom they have formed a local bond. Many of your friends and neighbors may rely on these institutions for everything from everyday banking to large loans to start a small business. These are valuable institutions, and they are under attack from big-government policies like Dodd-Frank.
Alongside my colleagues in Congress, I am working to remove the detrimental effects of Dodd-Frank and ease the burden on small banks and credit unions who can best meet the needs of the people and local communities they serve.Read More
WASHINGTON - Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) and the House passed H.R. 1734 the Improving Coal Combustion and Residuals Regulation Act of 2015, which she co-sponsors, preventing the EPA from unilaterally implementing and enforcing one-size-fits-all regulations on state and local energy producers.
“Coal is one of the most abundant and affordable sources of power in the United States and accounts for roughly 80% of Missouri’s power,” Hartzler said. “Moreover, coal’s residual ash is an important byproduct, the recycling and use of which helps keep utility costs low, provides for low-cost durable construction, and reduces landfill waste. These are all major benefits for the average Missourian.”
“This bill provides for the safe management and disposal of coal ash, preserving Americans’ health, the environment, and an estimated 316,000 jobs in the industry,” Hartzler continued. “Further, by allowing states the ability to set up their own coal ash permit programs, based on the federal minimums the EPA has set forth, this legislation allows local authorities to determine what is best for their people, power plants, and resources--eliminating the harmful effects of top-down, one-size-fits-all policies from Washington.”
Congresswoman Hartzler represents Missouri’s Fourth Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. She serves on the House Agriculture, Armed Services, and Budget Committees.
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WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) yesterday evening spoke on the House floor in response to the appalling undercover videos of Planned Parenthood doctors discussing the harvesting and sale of unborn babies’ body parts and organs.
Below is a video of the Congresswoman’s speech followed by a transcript of her remarks.
Congresswoman Hartzler: “I thank my colleague from Wisconsin for your leadership and hosting this special order tonight.
You know it’s vital that we have this extremely important conversation concerning the unborn and, while this topic is very difficult to discuss, it is something we need to talk about and recognize, in order to stop the unspeakable horrors currently taking place.
Last week and this morning, new videos were released detailing how Planned Parenthood harvests and sells the body parts of aborted children. For decades Planned Parenthood employees have tried to diminish the humanity of the unborn by belittling them to blobs of tissue. However, this video is evidence that Planned Parenthood knows that these are not simply blobs of tissue but actual human beings that have tiny lungs and little livers and beating hearts.
We need to get our priorities straight. In the video the Planned Parenthood doctor callously describes altering abortion procedures by crushing a baby’s body in order to preserve certain organs for harvesting. She says, “I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above.”
This is human life we’re talking about. We cannot stand by while aborted baby parts are being sold for profit.
This morning’s video shows another Planned Parenthood doctor shamelessly haggling over the price of the aborted baby body parts. She discusses how the price could change based on the volume and developmental stage of the aborted babies.
While I am pleased that there are federal and state level investigations underway, I believe more needs to be done.
Planned Parenthood has received over $200 million in federal funds since 2012. It is clear that Planned Parenthood places profit not women’s health and safety ahead of all else. They must be stopped.
I urge support for Congressman Black’s legislation that prohibits all federal funds to Planned Parenthood. Federal dollars cannot continue to flow to any entity that has such a blatant and heartless disregard for human life.”
A year ago, after Congress responded to reports of gross mismanagement within the VA, President Obama signed the Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act to address those chronic problems at the Department of Veterans’ Affairs. The law included $10 billion in funding for the Administration to provide better care for veterans and increase VA oversight and accountability. This week the House plans to pass legislation that expands the administration's abilities to provide accountability.
For example, the law allowed the Administration and the VA to fire and/or punish those employees responsible for the mismanagement--yet the New York Times reports that “the department punished a total of eight of its 280,000 employees for involvement in the scandal. One was fired, one retired in lieu of termination, one’s termination is pending, and five were reprimanded or suspended for up to two months.”
An analysis of VA data released by the Associated Press in April finds that “the number of patients facing long waits has not declined, even after Congress gave the department an extra $16.3 billion last summer to shorten waits for care.” Most recently, the VA has said that, despite this funding, it still faces a $3 billion shortfall.
The President, on the other hand, plans to tout his Administration's success with the VA in a speech on Tuesday, possibly highlighting the VA’s progress in cutting into its claims backlog, from more than 611,000 in March 2013 to fewer than 124,000 as of last week. Similarly, VA Secretary McDonald has said the agency has made significant progress in the past year to improve its health care system and service delivery and set the course for long-term reform.
Question of the Week: Has the President's Administration done enough to our nation's veterans?Read More
The #FaithItForward initiative provides a great opportunity to highlight @The Recovery Lighthouse, Inc. in Warrensburg. Recovery Lighthouse is truly a blessing to many Missourians and I am proud they make Missouri’s Fourth a home. For nine years now, Adriatik Likcani and Douglas Quirmbach, the founders of Lighthouse, have been bringing hope to many Missourians in need.
Jackie’s story is one of many truly inspiring stories of women caught in the vise of addiction who found freedom through the Faith, Hope, and Love that they encountered at the Lighthouse. To learn more about #FaithitForward, or to submit a story to be featured, visit https://www.facebook.com/FaithitForward.
“Hi my name is Jackie, I am 34 years old and I live in Odessa, Missouri. I first started using methamphetamine when I was 22 years old. Up until that point, I had been a good provider for my children and would have described myself as a responsible person. I started using drugs in an attempt to better fit in with the people around me. I had a traumatic childhood which involved me being molested from a very early age and it ending with me actually conceiving a child from one of my abusers. Using drugs helped me to detach from these painful memories, but in that process slowly deteriorating my life, consisting of me being incarcerated twice, and ending with me losing custody of my children. While I was incarcerated I heard of Recovery Lighthouse, a recovery support provider, which offered several services that I was in need of such as safe housing to go to upon my release from prison. Recovery Lighthouse/ LIME Tree was the first place I didn’t feel like a worthless addict and I wasn’t judged for being a convicted felon. The services offered such as recovery education groups, spiritual life skills, counseling, and the peer-mentoring assisted me in working through several past issues I had which helped establish a good foundation for me to be successful in my daily living. The spiritual aspect of the program helped me find peace with my past so I could move forward in my future. The staff helped me access resources that I didn’t even know existed and assisted in the development of my recovery plan which has been a big part of how I am still clean and sober today. I have been clean and sober since July 15, 2012 and I know that this would not have been possible without the recovery support services that I received. Very few people believed that I would be able to change my life and live without the use of substances; however, the staff at Recovery Lighthouse/LIME Tree believed in me until I could start believing in myself. Today, I am gainfully employed, I am working towards regaining custody of my children, I pay my own bills, I have improved my relationships with my family, I am successfully completing my parole requirements, and most importantly I have found a way of doing all of this without the use of drugs. I love my life today which is an incredible thing for me to say seeing as before I had no hope for my future.”
More Recovery Lighthouse and LIME Tree Success stories:
I need overall recovery, and I found that here. I know that spiritual growth and my walk with God will help keep me clean and help me grow in my recovery. I have renewed my faith and have started praying more regularly.
I came here very distant from God and I have been blessed to find my way here. When I entered the program I re-started my relationship with God.
Having been through so much in my life I have been close and yet distant from God. While in this program, I have been able to open up and become more honest with who I am and what I need for my recovery. With the program being faith-based it has helped me to gain an understanding of God and how His patience, peace and love can inspire me to be a better person and learn forgiveness and under-standing through forgiving myself.
Somer entered our program upon her release from Lafayette county jail. When Somer initially started services with us she was unemployed, homeless, and hopeless. We were able to meet one of her immediate needs by providing housing for Somer. While Somer was in our program, she was actively involved in daily groups that addressed healing in holistic way. She also attended 12-step meetings each week such as Narcotics Anonymous, Alcoholics Anonymous, and Celebrate Recovery which also assisted in maintaining her recovery. Within the first week, Somer was assisted in the development of a skills-based resume and was provided with counsel to develop some interviewing skills. Somer was able to find employment at Patricia’s food market within 3 weeks of her initial contact with our agency. Within a short time of being engaged with the services that we offer, Somer stated that the spiritual groups and guidance that our program offers helped her develop a relationship with a Higher Power that has assisted her in finding purpose in her life. Somer was able to move into a place of her own when she left our program. Somer was able to be reconnected with her children and they now live with her full-time in her house in Odessa. Today, Somer is still clean and sober and has maintained her employment at Patricia’s. When Somer was asked how she feels as about the LIME Tree program she answered:
“This program offered me the support I needed at a very difficult time in my life and made it possible for me to obtain some of the most basic of necessities of life when I had no other resources to provide them. Not only have they assisted me with tangible items, the staff has offered me genuine emotional and spiritual support.”
Misty entered our inpatient program on May 1, 2015. When Misty initially entered our program she was using substances on a daily basis, she had not been employed in years, and she did not have much hope for her future. Misty is a single mother who has temporarily lost custody of her 2 small children who are currently residing with some of her immediate family members. She comes from an abusive household where drugs are used on a daily basis and although Misty is in our program to stop using substances; her initial plan was to return to this same household after completing our program for this was her only option. Misty’s ultimate goals are to live a substance free lifestyle, to get full custody of her children back, become employed, and to complete her probation successfully.
While in our program Misty has participated in groups that focus on developing healthy boundaries, building self-esteem, learning relapse prevention tools, employment, parenting, anger management, identifying safe relationships and spirituality. During the short time in our program we have had the privilege to witness Misty change from a person who was withdrawn and defeated to a person who is motivated and hopeful about her potential in her new found way of life.
“I am finally excited about my life now; I have hope for the first time in my life. I have never before used spirituality as a way to gain strength and guidance, but I can see just in this short amount of time the difference it has made in my ability to believe I deserve a better life.”
Misty will successfully complete our inpatient program on May, 31 2015. She has developed a recovery plan for when she leaves that involves continued attendance at the Recovery Lighthouse for outpatient counseling, attending church weekly, and continued involvement with other mutual help meetings such as Narcotics Anonymous and Celebrate Recovery.
On May 13, 2015, Erin entered our program for the second time. Erin initially went through our program a little over a year ago, and when she left she felt as though she was ready to start her new life without substances. Before Erin left she had stated:
“I have the tools I need to be successful, and if I can just stay away from the people I need to, then I know that I can do this.”
A barrier that Erin faced, which is common to many of the women that are trying to change their lives, is that she was returning to the same environment that she used in because of a lack of other options. When Erin showed up at our program again it was devastating to see how the once joyful, motivated and spirit-filled woman, looked heart-broken and hopeless. Through her tears she murmured,
“How did I get here again.”
Although it took Erin some time to bounce back and find her inner strength again, I am happy to report that she is back and stronger than ever both emotionally and spiritually. Once Erin had some hope again, things started to change for her. She started to walk a little taller, with her head up and a smile across her face. The once defeated woman was now encouraging others that “it’s going to get better, just hold on. “ Erin decided that she wanted to do things differently this time.
“The spiritual teaching and guidance I received has helped me change from a self-centered way of living to a more spiritually focused approach.”
Erin successfully completed our program on June 12, 2015, and she stated she has never been more excited about what the future holds for her life.”
Ashley entered our program stating that she had little hope for her future. Ashley stated that her family had completely given up on her and her ability to do something with her life. Ashley had recently been kicked out of a transitional living center because she was told that she was unemployable. One of the first areas of need that we were able to help Ashley with was housing through our facility. Once this basic need was met, Ashley had the ability to focus on other needs in her life that included her continued recovery from the use of substances and an opportunity for her to look for employment. Our staff assisted Ashley in preparing a resume, taught her basic interviewing skills and assisted her with obtaining professional work attire to help with her search for employment. Ashley has now been working at Patricia’s food market for several months and has recently received a promotion to assistant manager in the deli department. Our staff was also able to assist Ashley with finding a resource that helped her address her dental issues. Within a 4 month period Ashley was able to have 8 of her teeth pulled and have dentures made. Ashley has stated that this has assisted her in feeling better about herself and has increased her self-esteem. Ashley has been living independently for several months now and is still gainfully employed. Ashley stated:
“The Lime Tree brought me closer to God and without my Higher Power I would not have remained sober as long as I have.”
She still comes to our facility to attend individual counseling sessions and our relapse prevention groups. Ashley continues to remain in recovery and provide hope to other women who currently reside at the LIME Tree Recovery House.
When our staff first met Kerri, she had a small amount of clean time; she was jobless and was without a safe, supportive environment to live in. We immediately offered Kerri an opportunity to move into the LIME Tree Women’s Recovery House. Kerri was involved in all the services that our program had to offer. She was able to develop some recovery tools through our daily relapse prevention groups. Kerri also had an opportunity to work through some unresolved grief issues with one of our qualified staff members in order to strengthen her recovery process. While in the first month of living in the house, Kerri developed a skills- based resume and learned interviewing techniques and skills. Kerri had not been employed for several years at that point and had some anxiety related to looking for employment. Kerri’s recovery coach met with her to have mock interviews to better prepare Kerri for any upcoming interviews. Kerri had her first interview at a grocery store within a week and was hired on the spot. Kerri has maintained her employment to this day.
“The staff are so caring and the spiritual and recovery groups really taught me a whole new way of living.”
Kerri is now living independently and is working towards being reunited with her son full-time. Kerri has mentioned to our staff that she has been given a new chance at life and that she now feels as if she has the ability to continue a successful way of life.
Serving as a therapy lifeline for those who have experienced substance abuse problems, Recovery Lighthouse provides community members the proper avenue towards recovery through the use of faith-guided principles and values. As of March 2015, the Lighthouse has touched upon more than 300 women’s lives through one of its leading programs, The LIME (Love In Motion Every day) Tree Women’s program, which provides an intensive 30-day personal growth session focused on raising self-esteem, developing self-control, rediscovering spirituality, and building support networks. Since their conception, several thousands of lives have received valuable individual and group-based counseling, spiritual guidance, and rehabilitation.
Through the passionate support of local churches, businesses, and individuals the Recovery Lighthouse is making a positive difference in the lives of many. For further information about the Recovery Lighthouse and its faith-based programs, please visit the website here.
WASHINGTON - Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) released the following statement in response to the Obama administration’s announcement of the P5+1 reaching an agreement with Iran, a state-sponsor of terrorism, regarding its nuclear program:
“Any deal that ends in a nuclear Iran is a bad deal and should be rejected. This agreement jeopardizes our national security and that of our allies by giving Iran the ability to continue its march towards nuclear capability. Additionally, this deal will hand Iran billions in sanctions relief for it to continue funding terrorism and promoting instability in the region. This agreement relies on the hope that Iran, which has proven to shirk agreements in the past, complies with the terms—only to extend the break-out time by less than a year. In short, this agreement does not stop Iran from being at the doorstep of nuclear capability. I am glad we have 60 days to review the deal and get the full picture; but the fact remains Iran is a designated sponsor of terrorism and should be verified much more than trusted.”
Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler serves on the House Armed Services, Agriculture, and Budget Committees. She represents Missouri’s Fourth Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.
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1023 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Vicky Hartzler is the Representative for Missouri’s 4th Congressional District, having been elected to that position on November 2, 2010.
She was born October 13, 1960 in Cass County, was raised on a farm in Archie, and lives with her husband, Lowell and daughter, Tiffany, on a working farm in Cass County. She is a graduate of both the University of Missouri-Columbia and Central Missouri State University (now University of Central Missouri) graduating summa cum laude with a B.S. in Education from MU and a M.S. in Education from Central Missouri.
She was first elected to political office in November of 1994 as the State Representative from Missouri’s 124th District. She served three terms, leaving in January of 2001. Prior to her time in politics Vicky taught family and consumer sciences for 11 years in Lebanon and Belton.
In 2004, she served as spokesperson for the Coalition to Protect Marriage, a state constitutional amendment which passed resoundingly and led to Missouri recognizing traditional marriage as a union of a man and a woman. In 2005, she was appointed as Chair of the Missouri Women’s Council, serving for two years.
Vicky and Lowell Hartzler own a company with three farm equipment stores in the 4th District.
The Hartzler family lives near Harrisonville in Cass County.
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Honored to visit today w/ Col. Greg Eckfeld from 442nd at WAFB who is deployed. Proud of his service. Praying 4 him. http://t.co/igCy9Z8n3k
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This week marked the 240th birthday of the Army Chaplain Corps. The military chaplain is an indispensable tool for our soldiers. Far too often
During the first six years of the Obama Administration, federal regulators added an average of 81 new major regulations--those with an economic
I spoke today at a Concerned Women For America LAC rally against a bad #IranDeal that does not free the four Americans being held in Iran. We
Federal dollars cannot continue to flow to any entity that has such a blatant and heartless disregard for human life. After the release of the
The #FaithItForward initiative provides a great opportunity to highlight The Recovery Lighthouse, Inc. in Warrensburg. Recovery Lighthouse is