FOP chaplain visits hospitals, organizes blood drives during COVID-19 pandemic

A chaplain with FOP Lodge 5 is visiting hospitals and organizing blood drives during the COVID-19 pandemic. He wants to offer the power of prayer to the frontline workers who may not have had the time or ability to take a moment for themselves.

The laugh when told he was a nominated hero showed how uncomfortable it had made him. You may not know his face or his name but you have likely heard of his work and that’s just fine with Father Steve Wetzel, Chaplain of FOP Lodge 5 and part of the Michael the Archangel ministry program.

“We’re not about the spotlight and I’m always telling people we do our work behind the scenes,” Father Wetzel told FOX 29.


As the chaplain for the local FOP lodge in Philadelphia, Father Wetzel regularly works with frontline officers. Since the pandemic has struck, he has expanded to organizing blood drives, hospital visits and days like the ones at Jefferson Torresdale Hospital.

“We set this day up today and here we are, participating in the blessing and prayer of the medical staff," Father Wetzel explained.

Along with FOP leadership and others, they just wanted to offer a prayer to the lifesavers who may not have had the time or ability to take a moment for themselves. That was just the beginning of their day at Jefferson Torresdale Hospital.

“I was invited to come up to the floor of the Intensive Care Unit to pray for the intensive care staff and patients up in the ICU as well.”

It was another example of the bonds created by this pandemic to watch Father Wetzel and his usual group of police first responders showing their support for others who were also on the frontlines.

“We want to participate in letting them know that we care about them as much as the folks I work with every single day," he added.

Father Wetzel has actually been nominated as a hero multiple times and for many, it’s easy to see why in the brief moments to pull him aside to talk.“

Yeah, I might come in and do my ministry or talk to officers and then silently slip away. That’s kind of my routine," he said.

It’s easy to understand, but today the people that regularly and quietly help him wanted to make sure, at least for a moment, he was realizing that he was their hero — for goodness sake.

We want to hear from you. Tell us about a hero you know using the hashtag #FOX29Heroes or #ForGoodnesSake.


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