“We’re looking for a few good men!”
That was the recruitment pitch of the U.S. Marines back in the 1980s. Today more than a few good men and women from all branches of the military can be found at Nyack College and Alliance Theological Seminary. Among the distinguished group of veterans studying at the Seminary is Jeffrey Walsh.
A Master Sergeant (E-8), Jeffrey is earning his Master of Divinity in missions and theology with a concentration in church development. He has served in the Army National Guard for the past 20 years. The husband and father of three is also the senior pastor of Wallingford Church of the Nazarene in Wallingford, Connecticut.
Not surprisingly, he is quite comfortable in yet another role. Jeffrey is the student leader of Nyack’s veterans support group. “The most meaningful support that the Nyack veterans receive is the power of prayer and openness,” he shares. “We are a group that allows the Holy Spirit to search us and draw out the issues we face daily from past wounds physically and emotionally. It is in the support group that we find healing and freedom as Christ reworks our life within the community of other veterans.”
Jeffrey explains that the mental and emotional pain veterans endure is what is most misunderstood. “There is much that is misunderstood and much that is misdiagnosed by those who are not veterans. I asked the Lord to show me this long ago, that as I would go through combat, I would know how to minister to other combat veterans. God showed me clearly.” He adds, “I admire their sacrifice, and in the pain and grief of that sacrifice they still seek to know and do God’s will for their lives. They are overcomers in the midst of the Holy Spirit working in and through them.”
How does Nyack College and Alliance Theological Seminary impact their veteran students? Jeffrey can testify for his own experience. “I am thankful for a school like Nyack because the staff has spent time alone with the Lord; thus they bring the transformative power of the Holy Spirit into the classroom. Each class I have had has changed me immensely.”