Rawlings School of Divinity


Doctor of Ministry (DMin)


Boyd Hatchel


PTSD, Moral Injury, Loss of Purpose, Loss of Identity, Combat and Operational Stress, Post-traumatic stress


Counseling | Leadership Studies


Currently, there is no standardized screening and counseling model that enables Navy Chaplains to counsel those with post-traumatic stress injury, moral injury, and loss of purpose. The shame associated with these three conditions is a significant contributor to Service Member suicide, mental health problems, and substance abuse. Chaplains are often the first line of care Service Member’s access because of the chaplain’s accessibility and legally protected complete confidentiality. U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Army veterans that completed at least one deployment were solicited to participate in this research thesis. Data was collected through participants’ completion of the Modified Military Moral Injury Questionnaire (M3IQ), an interview with each participant detailing their responses to the M3IQ, and their opinion on the efficacy of the Military Moral Injury Symptom Scale, and the Pastoral Narrative Disclosure counseling model. This research thesis theorized that a professional screening and counseling model would allow better care for Service Members and better collaboration with mental health and medical providers. Developing a care model that integrates care for the warrior’s physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual components makes healing after trauma more attainable. Such therapy will allow our warriors to regain a sense of their identity before they suffered trauma, and healthily reintegrate into their homes, units, and communities.