Can Christians display a life together that’s as compelling as war?
Nancy Sherman's message is clear: society must understand the totality of human experiences of war, including their moral dimensions.
In 1998, I drove my parents from Wisconsin to Georgia to visit the new National POW Museum. My siblings couldn't believe I'd agreed to this.
From All Saints until Veterans Day, I’m posting a blog series on soldier saints at Centurions Guild. “Ten Saints, Ten Days” explores ten lives, their context, and their relevance to soldiers today. In the Bible, the number ten signifies completion and wholeness—something many soldiers today do not feel. The moral complexity of their service is too often brushed away with a quick “thank you” or an upgrade to first class. But soldiers’ experiences, their testimonies, are part and parcel to the integrity of the church—especially in this time of war. A theologically credible account of war requires the voice of soldiers, the actual bodies that participate in it.
If soldiers make it home, the war comes with them. Every day, about 18 of them implode in suicide.
There's a danger in making veterans into secular saints. The saints don’t need us to give their deaths meaning; they died fully rewarded.
On Easter Sunday, Jake Tapper interviewed Rick Warren on ABC’s This Week, asking the influential pastor a series of questions on faith and politics. Of particular interest were his comments on soldiers and war (which did not make it into the aired segment but are available here). At the end of the interview, Warren exclaimed, “God hates war, but loves every soldier.” As a combat veteran, I was impressed by and grateful for Warren’s statement. The Bible makes clear that war is at best a necessary evil--the idea at the core of the just war tradition. And yes: God loves each and every soldier. But I want to look more closely at the latter thought, especially in light of the suicide epidemic that currently afflicts our nation’s veterans and soldiers.
Mike is a veteran who attended college on the new GI Bill. When he walked into my office, I knew something was wrong.