Veterans Journey Home: Faith, Hope & War
Veterans Journey Home: Faith, Hope & War, a CBS Interfaith Special, looks at the issues veterans face as they transition to civilian life. This Special broadcast will be on the CBS Television Network Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015 (check local listings).
According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, there are 22 million veterans in the U.S. This program highlights the stories of some of these men and women who have volunteered to serve their country.
Traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress (PTS) are often referred to as the unseen wounds of war. It’s estimated that 500,000 veterans have returned from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan with symptoms of PTS. Less than half seek help for their condition, and many self-medicate with drugs and alcohol. Among the areas impacted is the criminal justice system in Denton County, Texas, where a Veterans Treatment Court Program is offered as an option to serving time in jail. Interviews include Judge David D. Garcia, and Virginia “Ginger” Simonson, Veteran Court Mentor Coordinator.
In 2013, Catholic Charities of Houston formed The Lotus Project for Women Veterans. In addition to mental health referrals and basic needs support, the organization offers permanent, supportive housing options for disabled women veterans. Olivia Christina Bush, Program Coordinator for The Lotus Project, speaks about challenges that are unique to women vets and how these efforts are making a difference. Also featured are two women veterans who found permanent housing and support through the program.
Another speaker on the program is Rev. Dr. J. Craig Combs, retired chaplain with the Texas National Guard, who served two tours in Iraq and today is the faith-based coordinator for the Military Veteran Peer Network in Texas. According to him, our society needs to do a better job in helping veterans transition from a “war mind to a peace mind.” He leads a discussion with a group of Texas veterans who are creating a new normal for themselves through volunteer efforts and in the sharing their stories.
Rev. Dr. Rita Nakashima Brock is founding Co-Director of the Soul Repair Center at Brite Divinity School in Ft. Worth, Texas. She is a widely recognized expert on the emerging study of moral injury and recovery. She talks about moral injury and what it takes to rebuild a moral identity. Dr. Robert Lee Hill, Minister Emeritus of the Community Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Kansas City, Mo., talks about how the faith community can help foster a “repair of the soul.”
John P. Blessington is Senior Executive Producer and Liz Kineke is Producer. In creating the topics and content of this Cultural & Religious Documentary CBS seeks input from the National Council of Churches, the Interfaith Broadcasting Commission, and from clergy, scholars and other representatives of each of the religions presented within a program.
Following the Oct. 4 air date, this program may be viewed again at www.cbsnews.com/religion-and-culture. “Like” us on Facebook.com/CBSReligion and follow us on Twitter @CBSReligion.
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