Marine veteran Bill Wright, a member of the Catholic War Veterans, salutes some dozen men who served in the U.S. armed forces during the Vietnam War era at a June 29 commemoration hosted by archdiocesan Catholic Housing and Community Services at its senior living site in South Philadelphia. (Gina Christian)

A veterans service organization is looking to welcome faithful who have served their country.

The Catholic War Veterans (CWV) and Auxiliary of the U.S.A. is hosting a membership drive through Dec. 31 that will waive dues for new members until Oct. 1, 2024.

Membership is open to Catholic U.S. citizens who are on active duty (over 90 days) or who are honorably discharged veterans. Those who are not veterans but are related to a living or deceased veterans are eligible to join the CWV Auxiliary.

Organized in 1935 by Father (later Msgr.) Edward J. Higgins of New York, the CWV received an apostolic blessing from Pope Pius XI and a congressional charter from President Ronald Reagan in 1984, with the latter honor making the CWV only Catholic organization of its kind. With posts throughout the nation, the CWV and its Auxiliary support active duty personnel and military chaplains worldwide, and veterans in the U.S.

With a motto of “For God, For Country, For Home,” CWV members provide advocacy through a national network of veteran service officers who in particular serve wounded and disabled veterans in securing their Veterans Administration (VA) benefits. Other outreach includes visits to VA and other hospitals, as well as donations of clothing, personal hygiene items, books, videos and audio media to veterans in long-term care. the CWV also organizes holiday parties, celebrations, summer barbecues and other entertainment events.

(Related: ‘Never too late’ for Vietnam veterans honored at archdiocesan senior complex.)

The CVW provides advice and assistance to military family members experiencing need as a result of family emergencies, natural disasters, sudden illness or death. Posts across the nation gather for fellowship and fundraising.

Youth programming supports faith-based and patriotically themed grade-school coloring contests, as well as essay and oratorical contests in advanced grades. The CWV also sponsors scholarships for secondary schools and awards for college-level students involved in the Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) programs.

For more information about the CWV and its Auxiliary, visit or contact CWV Pennsylvania Department Second Vice Commander Michael Rang at 223-255-1754 or