A bill to build a monument for fallen Jewish Chaplains at Arlington National Cemetery is moving its way through the US legislature.
The US House of Representatives voted to authorize construction of the monument Monday. The bill now moves to the Senate.
Dozens of national and locally based Jewish and veterans groups in the United States led by the Jewish Federations and the Jewish Welfare Board Jewish Chaplains Council of the JCC Association of America have worked for three years to establish the memorial alongside the existing memorials for Catholic and Protestant chaplains.
The memorial, which has been designed and paid for by private donations, must receive congressional authorization before construction can begin. Thirteen Jewish chaplains have been killed while serving in the United States Armed Forces.
"I can think of no better expression of our nation's gratitude for our Jewish War Chaplains than the passage of this resolution during Jewish American Heritage Month, and a week before Memorial Day," Congressman Jeff Miller, chairman of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs, said.
"The 13 Jewish chaplains who will be honored stood beside our troops and lent their strength during good times and bad, on the battlefield and off. This memorial will serve as an inspiration to all to learn their stories that are such an important part of our nation's history."
The congressional resolution urges for the provision of space "for a memorial marker, to be paid for with private funds, to honor the memory of the Jewish chaplains who died while on active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States."
The memorial's final design is subject to the approval of the secretary of the Army.