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Spiritual Care During Disasters

While recently talking with a friend, he discussed a story from when he was younger about the unfortunate event of experiencing a house fire while in the midst of a flood. His family of nine lost everything. Displaced and despondent, my friend's church came alongside his family to meet several immediate physical needs. I asked my friend if he remembered any good from that experience. He answered my question in a most astonishing way. He told me that his mother was only upset because her Bible was destroyed by the fire. However, when they arrived at their temporary home, someone had left a note and a new Bible for her. The local body of believers surrounded his family by providing spiritual care and hope through such a disaster.

No one is ever prepared for a house fire, let alone a house fire during a flood. I asked what allowed his family to remain hopeful during such a calamity. The community of a local church in which people came along side to offer physical help and spiritual hope, eased the stress. In emergency disasters, local organizations are very quick to care for the physical needs of individuals and families, but often, the spiritual effects of such disasters are often overlooked. Spiritual care is vital during emergency disasters because people need hope; people need communities from the local church to care for their spiritual questions and wanderings. Emergency disasters can shake the core of a family’s spirit. Local church communities must care for the spirit of a displaced and despondent family.

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