Care for the Sorrowing Soul

Healing Moral Injuries from Military Service and Implications for the Rest of Us

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Duane Larson, Jeff Zust
  • Eugene, OR: 
    Cascade Books
    , October
     286 pages.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.
Review coming soon!

Review by Kristin Vargas forthcoming.


Moral Injury is now recognized as a growing major problem for military men and women. Operant conditioning can overwhelm moral convictions and yet the question of whether “to shoot or not to shoot” often will never have a settled answer. Certain theories and treatment models about MI have been well developed, but too often overlook root issues of religious faith. The authors propose a new model for understanding moral injury and suggest ways to mitigate its virtually inevitable occurrence in pre-combat training, and ways to resolve MI post-trauma with proven spiritual resources. People outside the military, too, among whom the incidence of MI also is a growing threat, will benefit from this analysis. The stories of the injured—their shaping and their telling—are the key, and there are many illumining stories of moral injury and recovery. Those who suffer MI, their families, and caregivers, including counselors, pastors, and faith communities, will find hope-giving first steps toward the healing of MI in this book.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Duane Larson is senior pastor of Christ the King Lutheran Church, Houston, Texas. A systematic theologian, he also teaches at the University of Houston, Texas. Duane has written and lectured widely on theology and science, ethics, and ecumenical and interfaith relations.

Jeff Zust is a pastor and combat veteran with thirty years of service as an army chaplain. His experience includes serving multiple overseas tours of duty and teaching ethics at the United States Army Sergeants Major Academy and the National Defense University.

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