Training ministry workers to care for themselves and be better equipped to care for others.

By December 9, 2005

USA (MNN) — It’s been three months since Hurricane Katrina swept the U-S Gulf Coast, but the devastation still lingers.

Young Life workers from the area are trying to pick up the pieces of their own lives, while ministering to many other needs at the same time. Young Life’s Cindy Mathisloy says they are caring for the ministry workers through critical incident debriefing.

She explains: “They certainly have lost the routines of their life, so the idea of critical incident debriefing is to go in afterward, and train our volunteers and staff on how to take care of themselves and how to take care of other people who have just been through a crisis.”

Mathisloy says their energy is wearing thin, and trying to meet ongoing needs is tiring and discouraging. That’s why the kind of care and training Young Life is providing is so important. “People who are on Young Life staff, they just want to give. And I’m sure that’s true for other ministries as well. And so it’s important always to instruct them how to take care of themselves first, so that they have something to give.”

And what they’ll be able to give is the love and compassion of Christ even in the midst of crisis. Mathisloy asks prayer for encouragement and endurance in the ongoing disaster relief.

“We’re in second and third and fourth level kinds of coping. And people who had hoped that things would be back to normal are finding that months and months later, things are still not back to normal. And the consensus is that we ought not look for what used to be normal, but we’re going to find a new level of what is normal.”

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