As a veteran exposed to the horrors of the Vietnam War, David Friend has a strong heart and desire to help those like him who continue to suffer from the effects of not only that conflict, but other wars as well.
Now a pastor at Dream Center First Assembly of God Church in Scottsdale, Arizona, Friend continues his mission to honor and help veterans who suffer from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) and the residual health issues created by the dangerous chemical Agent Orange. Friend considers it his mission to bring attention to the problems these veterans—there are 800.000 from Vietnam living today—still encounter nearly a half-century later and to honor them for their service.
"I'm excited about the opportunity to reach out to people and let them know about these issues veterans face today," Friend told Dr. Steve Greene on a recent episode of Greenelines on the Charisma Podcast Network. "Many people believe that the Vietnam thing is just kind of history and in the past, that it's over and done with and there's nothing else really happening with it. But the problems from Vietnam are very real, and they're very alive.
"And the issues of Agent Orange and PTSD are sadly alive and well," he said. "We need to reach out to people and bring awareness to the situation and let people know of God's healing touch and his ability to turn this whole thing around.
"As a Vietnam veteran diagnosed with Agent Orange-caused cancer and trials with PTSD, I have attempted to examine these two potential death sentences," Friend said. "America needs a plan of action to help these veterans still living today. Because of God's grace, I can expose these issues to the American people.
"In our churches, we need to become aware of these veterans who serve in our churches and our communities, to get to know them, be aware of them and honor and bless them as a group," he said. "If nobody else will do it, your pastor can step up. That's what I did—just to simply get to know these people, these men and women now who just need help and guidance and let them know that people care."
For more about Pastor David Friend's ministry to veterans, listen to the entire podcast.
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