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Share your stories and ideas with the network as you respond to crisis and disaster.
Category » Disaster Volunteers
Apr 07
2012
Steve Marr

Virginia Plane Crash Demonstrates Heroic Efforts

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

Friday a Navel jet crashed into an apartment complex in Virginia Beech shortly after takeoff. Amazingly, no one was killed in the apartment building as the crashing plane exploded.

The pilots started dumping fuel that resulted in a far smaller fireball then would have otherwise occurred. The pilot’s stayed with the plan until the last possible instant before ejecting in an attempt to steer away from buildings.

The U.S. Supreme Court recently handed down a unanimous decision upholding the right of religious organizations to decide who will be their leaders and teachers. The Hosann-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church vs Equal Employment Opportunity Commission upheld the ministerial exception of the First Amendment’s Freedom of Religion clauses saying government must respect religious exercise while not establishing religion. In a way it challenged government to preserve the freedom of religious organizations and not overturn decisions being made by a religious entity on determining their own leadership, beliefs, and teachers.

How does this affect the disaster response arena? The ruling affirms religious organizations decision-making authority affecting many Christian disaster and emergency responder organizations to hire, fire and implement their core beliefs without retribution. The fact is, the motivation for 89% of the volunteer first responders in any given disaster are faith-based, mostly Christian. If the Christian churches has the very heart of Jesus Christ removed from their response the very foundation for “why they respond” would be stripped away. No volunteers with a heart to respond like Christ, equals no volunteers!!

While protocols on sharing one’s faith should be sensitively adhered to in responding to disasters, nevertheless, Christians should take heart that responding to people in crisis is still a freedom of speech. We should not take that for granted, rather, exercise that freedom and right fully.

May 14
2011
Mary Marr

Flood Responders Be Aware

Posted by Mary Marr in Untagged 

Flood Responders Be Aware

 Self-deployment is not considered a wise response to the natural disasters affecting our nation. Self-deployment often brings more challenges than helpful support. During Katrina when there were no motel accommodations for anyone available within hours, CEN would receive calls from well meaning Christians who wanted to know where they should go to make reservations in order to assist.

 CEN encourages churches to become a CEN Ready Church before self-deploying. When a church is equipped they provide solutions not added problems to the incident. Even for the trained volunteer the flooding response requires wisdom. Before you let your heart rule your head go to www.christianemergencynetwork.org and download the suggestions found on CEN Ready Church in the drop down menu under Prepare Your Church.

So you have just completed your weekend training at your local church and you are ready to get your feet wet and your hands dirty.  Disaster Strikes.   Your team has self organized and has loaded up in the the church van headed out to make a difference.  But wait, don't forget the t-shirt.  Response shirts come in red, yellow, blue, orange; any color that stands out to tell everyone around you about who you are, who your with, or what you believe.  No matter what institution you serve under, be sure to give god the glory in everything you do.   Ask yourself these questions....  Where am I putting my money and my time?  Does the institution I serve under give glory to God and not man?