Pastoral Care for National Guard and Reserve: Using Bible Study to Equip National Guard and Reserve to Navigate through the Blessings and Burdens of Civilian-Military Vocations
Date of Award
Major Applied Project
Doctor of Ministry (DMin)
Scripture References in this Resource
1 Corinthians 7:17-24, Psalm 118; Psalm 127; Psalm 147; Matthew 6:10-11; Matthew 16:24; Romans 5:1-5; Romans 8:28-36; Romans 13:1-7; Ecclesiastes 1:1-3; Ecclesiastes 12:11-14; 1 Corinthians 15:58; Colossians 3:1-4; Genesis 1:26-30
Schleusener, David, S. "Pastoral Care for National Guard and Reserve: Using Bible Study to Equip National Guard and Reserve to Navigate through the Blessings and Burdens of Civilian Military Vocations" Doctor of Ministry. Major Applied Project, Concordia Seminary, 2022. 267 pp.
The researcher is a U.S. Navy Reserves chaplain and student at Concordia Seminary in Saint Louis, Missouri, in the Doctor of Ministry program. The researcher focused on the unique challenges, burdens, and significant stress our nation's reserve components face due to dual responsibilities in civilian and military sectors. National Guard and Reserve (NGR) is the term adopted for those serving in one of seven reserve components in the U.S. military. Routine hardships that NGR experience, if not removed, mitigated, or given purpose can cause significant suffering, that may lead to destructive results for NGR.
This Major Applied Project (MAP) reviewed research evidence to demonstrate NGR face unique challenges due to NGR responsibilities and to learn how NGR approach these unique challenges. The researcher used this review to develop a Bible study to equip NGR to better understand vocational duties and challenges and identify areas where growth in spiritual stamina and endurance is needed, so they can faithfully develop character needed to overcome or endure vocational challenges. The researcher applied the Bible study as a pastoral care tool to help NGR handle vocational burdens and blessings through a better understanding of vocations. The researcher used a pre-study knowledge check (PKC) before the study, and a post-study survey response (PSR) after the study to gauge the effectiveness of the Bible study.
The data analysis of the PKC and PSR suggests three things at minimum. First participants found the Bible study practical to the problems encountered as NGR. Second, it improved their cognitive understanding of vocation. Third, it fostered a sense of hope for facing vocational challenges. The data analysis further suggests a strong connection between the Bible study and hope. As the study improved the understanding of vocation, this theological understanding provided NGR the ability to address vocational sufferings with hope. The MAP suggested future research that could better determine the direct impact the Bible study had.
Schleusener, David, "Pastoral Care for National Guard and Reserve: Using Bible Study to Equip National Guard and Reserve to Navigate through the Blessings and Burdens of Civilian-Military Vocations" (2022). Doctor of Ministry Major Applied Project. 225.
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