Hello my fellow brothers and sisters in the fire service. My name is Roger Fowble and I am one of the newly appointed LAFD Chaplains and it is my honor and privilege to serve the members of the LAFD. I wanted to share with you my heart of why I became a department chaplain and tell you a little bit about myself.
I have been a member of our great department for 26 plus years and am currently a Captain I assigned to the EMS North Division out of Fire Station 88. I’ve been blessed to be married to my soul mate Alma for the last 22 years and have four wonderful children: Daniel, Andrew, Kristen and Luke. My family and I live in the Santa Clarita Valley and we attend a wonderful church called Real Life Church.
I often get asked the question why I wanted to become a chaplain for the LAFD and my answer is better understood through the story of how I became a chaplain. Our church has small gatherings of local people called life groups that meet once a week to review the sermon given that prior Sunday, and I am very honored to facilitate one of those groups. A fellow firefighter and chaplain of the LAFD who is in my life group named Rick Godinez approached me and asked if I had ever thought about being a chaplain for our department. I instantly thought that he was out of his mind! I did not feel worthy of being a chaplain and I didn’t have the schooling or training to be a chaplain. Rick told me that all you need in order to be a chaplain is to have a servant’s heart and a strong faith in our Lord and Savior. I told him that I was honored to be asked, but I would have to take a pass on it for now.
Several weeks passed and Rick again asked if I would consider applying for the chaplain position and I told him I would talk to my family, pray about it and then get back to him with an answer. I talked to my family and they all gave me their blessing. I received even more support for this decision while I was working at Fire Station 103 where it was my routine to check the department portal for any new information prior to going to bed. I was lying in bed and prayed, asking God that if it was His plan for me to apply for the chaplain position that He needed to make it blatantly clear to me that this is the path He desired for me. As I started to drift to sleep I realized I had forgotten to check the portal. I got out of bed and checked the portal for new information. I opened the information notices and the first one there was a notice for any members interested in applying for the position of department chaplain. Amazed and in awe, I said to myself “God I guess you can’t make it any clearer for me!” I applied for the position right then and there.
I have come to the conclusion that if God opens a door for me I will gladly walk through it and do whatever He asks of me. I am so honored to have been selected to serve as a chaplain for our department and I will pray everyday that God’s love and grace will be with all of you and your families. I look forward to being there when ever called upon to serve as one of your department chaplains.