Veterans Day is a celebration to honor America's veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good. Such a celebration occurred at Resurrection this past Sunday to honor all veterans, active duty military and members of the reserves.
Beginning with the presentation of the colors, some 250 veterans, friends and family began an evening to honor all who have served and those who continue to serve. Ages varied of those in attendance as the youngest, members of the ROTC of Shawnee Mission West High School, presented the colors.
Renowned author, minister and lecturer Dr. Rita Brock, author with Gabriella Lettini of Soul Repair: Recovering from Moral Injury after War was the featured speaker.
Dr. Brock explained that all of us grow up as civilians but training to be a soldier requires focus on the moral code of the military which includes honor, integrity, obedience to authority and courage. Yet war demands the handling of human remains, the dehumanization of the enemy, unnecessary killing through friendly fire as well as perceived failure to save others called survivor’s guilt. Dr. Brock explained that these are some of the causes of moral injury for veterans.
Another of the evening’s speakers explained Resurrection’s “Rezvet” ministry. Currently, church members send care packages to those deployed. This often leads to additional opportunities for congregants to continue to reach out to our soldiers on a personal level. As well, a Prayer List of Veterans and their families and friends is available for the clergy and congregation who use it daily.
The church has also formed mentoring and counseling ministries to help those veterans who have ended their tours of duty. These trained and certified mentors offer help to veterans dealing with such problems as guilt, shame, fear, anger, PTSD, military sexual trauma, TBI and moral injury. They are trained listeners, compassionate and non-judgmental. Likewise, our trained and licensed counselors help veterans and their families and friends with these and even more complicated issues.
Resurrection has now teamed with JCCC and the Writer’s Place to encourage veterans to write their own stories as writing has been found to be a therapeutic way for veterans to handle the traumas of war. Working also with Healing Waters, an organization where disabled vets are taught fly-fishing to encourage both their physical and emotional healing and well-being.
Therefore, Rezvets’ mission “… to help restore, reconcile and re-integrate veterans and their families to a holistic relationship within family and community including the community of faith” is aimed to help all service men and women. To become a part of this ministry, please email Rezvets@cor.org.