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Church Crisis Relief Plan


Expressions of love and sympathy: Cards, letters, and drawings. ... Give people copies of sermons that address the crisis from a perspective of hope ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Church Crisis Relief Plan

Church Crisis Relief Plan
  • Preparing Your Church to
  • Respond to Crisis
  • Presented by the
  • NCN District Chaplain Resource Team

  • In the wake of the September 11 terrorist
    attacks, Americans pulled together in silent acts
    of heroism.
  • Such heroism is also seen as people respond to
    needs arising from natural disasters such as
    hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods and
    other natural disasters.

Research and practical experience shows
  • 94 of Americans believe in God or in
  • some superior power.
  • The majority of those experiencing crisis will
  • turn to their faith for comfort and support.
  • Therefore, many will turn to God and the
  • Church for practical assistance, comfort,
  • and questions of eternal importance.

  • Government officials regularly warn us of the
  • possibility of more conflict on the horizon.
  • With these possibilities in mind, along with
  • unpredictability of nature, the Church must
  • prepared to respond to the needs of their
  • ? not only in a spiritual way,
  • ? but also with practical means,
  • ? showing the love of Christ.

Practical Resource
  • The Church Crisis Relief Plan will help you
  • mobilize your church and members.
  • It is a starting point outlining suggestions
  • a ten-step plan of action
  • This plan will guide you in assisting local
  • emergency personnel, victims, and their
  • families within the first week of a crisis.

Ten Step Plan
  • Inform the Church
  • Call to Prayer
  • Emergency Board Meeting
  • Contact Local Relief Agencies
  • Resource and Mobilize Lay Ministries
  • Blood Drive Participation
  • Gather Practical Response Items
  • Minister to Primary and Secondary Victims
  • Support United Community Efforts
  • Listen to Those Around You

1. Inform the Church
  • Communicate the facts clearly and simply.
  • Use a Phone tree to inform members of the
    situation, scheduled prayer meetings, and that
    the church board is determining how the church
    will respond.
  • Inform the church of the Boards action plan and
    explain how they can participate.
  • Keep members updated about progress with their
    action plan and how they are needed.

2. Call to Prayer
  • Call each family of your church to begin to pray
    for the situation.
  • Use your phone tree to continue providing updates
    and new needs for prayer.
  • Encourage people to pray for
  • People affected by the crisis
  • Emergency Responders
  • That God will be glorified through it all

  • Although it is difficult, start with praise.
    Focus on God's character. Praise God that He is
    sovereign that He has ultimate control over all,
    and that nothing takes Him by surprise. (Isaiah

Petition / Intercession
  • Ask God to use this situation to bring spiritual
    openness to those affected by the tragedy.
  • Ask God to guide and bless the relief ministry of
    the church.
  • Ask God to empower the helpers with a powerful
  • Ask God to prevent the enemy's attempt to
    escalate unresolved anger or guilt loss.

Petition / Intercession
  • Ask God to focus the minds of public officials
    on the need for prayer.
  • Ask God to equip leaders to mentor and minister
    to people.
  • Ask Godfor yourself and othersfor a passion and
    love that drives out fear.
  • Ask God to give you acts of kindness, compassion,
    and friendship to incorporate into your life in
    response to the crisis.

  • Thank God that the enemy has made a tactical
    error, and that God will use for good what Satan
    has intended for harm.
  • Thank God for the people who will be drawn to
    seek God because the overwhelming nature of the
  • Thank God for a vivid reminder of your own
    mortality and vulnerability, asking Him to
    prepare your heart and spirit for a faithful
    response when you are faced with tragedy.

3. Emergency Board Meeting
  • Determine practical ways you can respond. Have
    people share ideas, then determine which ones are
    most feasible and beneficial for the situation.
  • Have your group list needs to address. Come to a
    consensus by vote on the most needful problem.
  • Next, list possible solutions form a consensus
    on the most feasible solution.
  • List ways to implement the solution form a
    consensus on an implementation plan.
  • List team leaders and specific duties they will
    perform to help the team implement the plan.
  • Enlist people to assist the team leaders.

3. Emergency Board Meeting
  • 6. Create an "Action Plan Status Board" so you
    can check off items as they are completed and be
    aware of items that need extra attention.
  • 7. Set a time schedule for completing the
  • 8. Set periodic meetings to assess progress and
    make needful adjustments to the plan.
  • 9. Have a final evaluation meeting to determine
    the success of the plan.
  • 10. Determine whether the operation was
    successful or is a project that should be
    continued. If the project is completed, go back
    to step 1.

3. Emergency Board Meeting
  • Donations Appoint a team of leaders to research
    credible donor recipients. Begin with the
    District Resource Center, then contact local
    agencies. Give this information to your people so
    they can contribute through the church. Here are
    some tips.
  • Beware of pressure for on-the-spot donations.
  • Do not give cash.
  • Ask how much of your donation will be used for
    relief and how much for other programs or
  • Access reports on national charities at

3. Emergency Board Meeting
  • 5. Don't give out your credit card number.
  • 6. Ask for written information that describes the
    charity's programs and finances.
  • 7. Check if the organization is on, the search engine that powers and Guidestar
    lists over 700,000 charities that have 501-C3
    status. These groups have charitable status from
    the IRS so donations to them are tax-deductible.
  • Budgeting Ask your board to provide finances for
    educational materials and resources to help
    respond to the need.

4. Relief Agencies
  • Contact local, state, and national relief
    agencies to determine the most urgent needs and
    partner with these organizations to provide
    volunteers, physical needs, shelter, clothing, or

4. Relief Agencies
  • The Salvation Army USA National Headquarters,
    P.O. Box 269, Alexandria, Virginia 22313, United
    States (off) 703-684-5500 (fax) 703-684-3478
    (web) http//
  • The American Red Cross Disaster Services
  • American Blood Centers Call 1-888-BLOOD- 88 or

4. Relief Agencies
  • Chaplains Programs Many cities have police or
    fire services chaplains accustomed to dealing
    with crisis. Chaplain Services International
    provides Chaplain Basic Training and Certified
    Crisis Intervention training. E-mail
  • Large Law Enforcement Agencies Many large
    metropolitan areas have highly trained teams that
    can offer training and assistance. Most rural
    areas have no services for themselves.

Denominational Agencies
  • Assemblies of God Disaster Relief helps rebuild
    Assemblies of God churches http//
  • Convoy of Hope Contact David Auterson at (212) 786-0674

6. Mobilize Ministries
  • Enable lay ministries and leaders with
    information to deal with crisis reactions.
    Valuable information can be found from these
  • U.S. Department of Education http//
  • General Council of The Assemblies of God
  • The American Red Cross http//
  • International Critical Incident Stress
    Foundation http//
  • The American Academy of Experts in Traumatic
    Stress http//
  • Citizen Corps http//

6. Mobilize Ministries
  • Bible studies and small groups Take a short
    departure from your regularly scheduled topics
    and provide Bible studies for all ages that focus
    on a biblical response to crisis, tragedy,
    mourning, and anger.
  • Organize your churchs talent pool Food
    preparation and service, building trades,
    mechanical trades, care givers, business people,
    general services.
  • Partner with other churches and Christian
    organizations Organize a Care Team ministry by
    networking with other churches, businesses,
    service organizations, and schools willing to
    organize their resources and work on cooperative
    community efforts.

6. Mobilize Ministries
  • Make your facility available With some
    preparation and basic training your church
    facility can be designated a Red Cross Emergency
    Center. If a church has this designation and the
    pastor is set up as the Center Manager, then the
    church is free to not only meet the immediate
    physical needs of those who come but they are
    also free to help people with their spiritual
    needs as well, something that Red Cross does not
  • Become part of the big picture Volunteer your
    services to help your community draft a
    disaster/crisis response plan. It would include
    such considerations as emergency medical needs,
    emergency housing / shelter, emergency food and
    clothing, other logistics needs like security,
    traffic control, and networking with regional
    agencies for crisis response.
  • Critical Incident Intervention Counseling
    services Make a list of teams and professionals
    available in your area.

7. Practical Response Items
  • After contacting the appropriate agencies to
    determine what is needed
  • Coordinate collection Gather resources to meet
    existing physical needs. This could include
    things, such as clothing , blankets, food, first
    aid supplies, coats, shoes, baby items, toys.
  • Centralize the reception location Have families
    bring supplies to church to be taken to a relief
    agency at one time. Network with other churches
    and with the community to improve response.

8. Minister to Victims
  • Offer information and help for Primary
  • United States Justice Department Victims of
    Crime, 1-800-331-0075
  • Crisis Counseling Provide emergency counseling
    by trained counselors for people who have been
  • Victim Information Publish a list of other
    organizations people can call for a variety of
    basic needs.

8. Minister to Victims
  • Offer help for Family Members of Victims
  • Expressions of love and sympathy Cards, letters,
    and drawings. Include work done by children and
  • Follow-up care Place victims/families on your
    calendar for regular follow-up. Persons who have
    lost a spouse often experience adverse physical
    symptoms and/or emotional symptoms years after
    the event.

8. Minister to Responders
  • Remember First and Second Responders
  • Expressions of appreciation Send cards, letters,
    and drawings to military, rescue and relief
    workers involved with the aftermath of the
    situation and to their families.
  • Secondary personnel Simple acts of kindness can
    be expressed in many ways. Cookies, smiles, say
    thank you, offer help. Remember those who are
    cleaning up after a crisis have families and are
    concerned and affected by the situation, and
    appreciate a friendly face and a warm smile.

9. Support United Efforts
  • Assist in local meetings or gatherings to show
    unity of the entire community, city hall,
    business, civic groups, and churches.
  • Build relationships with the emergency service
    professionals in your community BEFORE a crisis
    happens and your group will be some of the first
    called to help. Pastors and churches have to get
    out of their buildings and bridge relationships
    for the future. The police and fire departments
    are wonderful places to start.

9. Support United Efforts
  • Encourage your people to take personal
    responsibility to bring hope to your community.
  • Put a visual reminder in your home or yard
    reminding your family and friends to pray.
  • Have family prayer asking for Gods help and hope
    for your friends, family and country.
  • Talk with your children. Give them the assurances
    they need and a chance to ask tough questions.
  • Invite people to join you in church.
  • Give people copies of sermons that address the
    crisis from a perspective of hope and faith.
  • Mobilize neighbors to light a candle in their
    windows at the same time each night.

10. Listen to those around you
  • Listen to and watch the people around you. Your
    community might or might not be located within
    the emergency area. Secondary victims occur
    everywhere. Be ready to assist and serve them in
    whatever way necessary.
  • Understand that different types of stress,
    trauma, fatigue, and victims will be present.

10. Listen to those around you
  • Four types of stress
  • Eustress The good stress that keeps us
  • Occupational Stress Rest take breaks, or a
  • Cumulative Stress A series of small crises that
    can accumulate and bring about an overload
  • Critical Incident Stress Our natural response to
    an abnormal situation that evokes a strong
    emotional, behavioral, physical or cognitive
    response. Crisis Intervention Counseling is
    strongly recommended.

10. Listen to those around you
  • Secondary Trauma is experienced by caregivers
    (police, fire, EMT, chaplains, pastors, or other
    volunteers) when dealing with a traumatized
    person either at the scene or elsewhere.
  • Secondary Trauma Victims may also include
    witnesses of traumatic events, friends of
    victims, children who witness Domestic Violence

10. Listen to those around you
  • Vicarious Victimization is the trauma we
    experience as we watch, hear, or read the news of
    a terrible event (e.g., too much attention to the
    news concerning the terrorist attack and/or some
    other traumatic event).
  • WARNING We must be careful how much of this
    tragic news we allow our children to view.

10. Listen to those around you
  • Use good trauma and crisis listening skills.
  • Do not assume you know what a person needs before
    you listen to the persons story.
  • Ask a few simple questions to help the person
    tell his or her story.
  • Where were you when this event happened?
  • How have you been feeling since the event?
  • What can we do to move on from here?

10. Listen to those around you
  • Listening Skills you can use to be a better
  • Dont assume you know how the person is feeling
    or thinking.
  • Listen with full attention. Do not begin to think
    of your response while the person is talking to
  • Repeat or restate the persons comments to make
    sure you have heard the person correctly.
  • Do not feel you must give an answer to everything
    a person says. Many people just need to talk.

Thank You
For more information contact aChaplain Resource
Team member
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