Direction For Your Ministry
 
For those of you who may be looking for something useful to do with your ordination, here's an idea. Since 9/11, almost 2 1/2 million Americans have served in the military. Most of them have returned home or will be returning soon. What do they find when they get here? The first thing they find is they can't get a job. While the unemployment rate for the country as a whole hovers around 8%, the unemployment rate for veterans is 17%. I have a complete career planning ministry at http://opng8.org/career.html

Feel free to use the resources you find there. If you have questions or need help, click on my name under my picture. This will open your email program to my private address. I realize that, as ministers, we are supposed to focus on spiritual issues. I find, however, that having a job and being able to feed your family does wonders for your spirit.

Unemployment may be one reason why we are losing about one veteran a day to suicide. Another may be the lack of mental health people to help veterans readjust to civilian life. When you think about it, getting out of the military is a lot like getting out of prison. In the military, your meals, housing and medical care are provided. Your day is pretty well laid out for you. Your choices for your social life are severely limited.

Then-BOOM-you're back in the world and you're on your own. In addition, the people you left behind have been getting on with their lives. It may take them awhile to get to know you again. This is especially true if you have been in a combat situation. If you have been killing people and seeing your friends killed, you are not the same person you were when you left.

The VA would love to help but they are short-handed. Right now, the VA backlog for disability claims is 870,000. The waiting period for mental health appointments is 50-80 days. Some people get tired of waiting and put a gun to their head. You might look at my Living Smart program at
http://opng8.org/livingsmart.html

Find organizations in your area interested in helping returning veterans. There may even be grant money available. Again, if I can be a resource, let me know. I know it's fun to talk about imaginary fishing trips and recipes but we are ministers. The implication is that we actually minister to God's children. Our children need us.

Consider this your wake-up call.

Best always
Brother Ron