STANDING AGAINST SUICIDE - REQUEST FOR PRAYER
The Army Chief of Chaplains has called for a weekend of prayer in the face of high rates of suicide among the force. Will you join your prayers with ours? An excerpt from a letter sent by Chaplain (Maj Gen) Solhjem:
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Earlier this month, I sent a message highlighting our need to ask God for greater strength and wisdom, as we seek to address the scourge of suicide within and around our ranks...I ask that our Army Chaplain Corps set aside the weekend of September 20-22, for prayer to focus us on the rise of suicide within the Army family. On those days, I encourage each of you in our Corps, across all Components, to join me as I pray, and to lead your units and faith communities to pray alongside us.
Suicides among veterans have occurred at troubling rates for many years. Today those tragic losses are happening alongside rising numbers of suicides by military members still in uniform, reported to be as many as one Soldier every three to four days, and at higher rates across the Defense Department in 2018 than at any time since the Department began collecting the data in 2001. Even one life lost to suicide is one too many, but the trend is alarming, especially when we consider that suicide is now the second leading cause of death among Americans 18-34 years old - and the majority of Soldiers are 30 years old and younger.
Please take up this prayer challenge next weekend to ask for God's strength and wisdom, as we seek to provide Help, Hope, and Healing to those in our ranks who are struggling with sustaining a sense of meaning and purpose in their lives.
THOMAS L. SOLHJEM Chaplain (Major General) U.S. Army Chief of Chaplains
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Hundreds of service members have taken their own lives in recent years, and the problem isn't going away. Hopelessness and loss are likely indicators that someone is in crisis and is at risk of self-harm or suicide.
If you or someone you know needs help, the Veterans Crisis Hotline is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at 800-273-8255, press 1. Services also are available online at www.veteranscrisisline.net or by text, 838255.
Jesus is the last, greatest, and only hope for humanity - may our prayers triumph over this scourge as men and women come to know the hope found only in Christ. Thank you for your spiritual contribution.