I am a Vietnam veteran who recently attended a Welcome Home Initiative at Christ the King Spiritual Life Center in Greenwich, NY. Upon arrival, I immediately felt a sense of peace. The grounds were beautiful and pristine, surrounded by woods and mountains. The accommodations were clean and comfortable. The staff was welcoming and kind. The meals were well prepared, delicious and plentiful. (And there were plenty of snacks available at all times). The whole Initiative is designed for veterans to rest, relax and heal.
There was continuous prayer by staff for the healing of old wounds. Being with other veterans, sharing our stories, praying together and with an understanding praying staff, an old haunting wound was brought to the light of Jesus. It came through many prayers and tears. I was set free. It was an experience I will never forget and will carry with me the rest of my life as my healing continues.
During my time there, I always felt welcome and appreciated. I thank God and praise Jesus for all those who participated and all that took place at the WHI.
"My veterans Welcome Home Initiative on November 8th-10th 2021 was for both men and Women. I am happy that I went on the retreat. I met some veterans; the majority were from the Northeast. A few of the veterans were from other parts of the United States. Chaplain Dawes was able to make arrangements for a professional staff team to pick me up from Rensselaer Train Station. As soon as I arrived at Christ the King, I felt I was in peace and paradise.
My parents are from Trinidad and Tobago, and when they were growing up they learned everything from and about the British, which made meeting the chaplain from England feel like coming home. I also felt connected to Chaplain Dawes because he is [an] officer of the British army, so we were able to form a rapport. I also felt connected with the organization when they incorporated their faith-based Christian beliefs for veterans like myself who suffer from PTSD.
By going to the retreat, I felt rejuvenated and happy to incorporate the religious aspect back into the lives of the veterans of the Welcome Home Initiative. When I was at the [Welcome Home Intiative] it’s primary focus was to help veterans dealing with their PTSD, Moral Injury, and soul repair We discussed our trauma in groups and also were given a few workbooks of faith based and veteran trauma. During the retreat some of the training reminded me of another faith-based organization called Heroes to Heroes. I [found that this retreat gave] me a more holistic approach on life and have had thoughts of one day resuming my studies, and studying theology or divinity. I already have my Master of Social Work and both degrees go hand [in] hand in helping people."
"I led a life of objectifying women and lust. These sisters healed me and laid hands on me casting out the spirits that had a hand in crushing them. This retreat has me looking at women through the eyes of Christ."