Cumberland Times-News

Latest news

May 4, 2014

Local chaplain gives help, healing, and hope in disaster area

CUMBERLAND — Paul Demers, a chaplain with the Western Potomac Chapter of the American Red Cross worked alongside other volunteers to provide hope, help and healing to the families that lost their loved ones in a devastating mudslide that struck Oso, Washington on March 22. He recounts a prayer and a moment of silence he held for the entire team during a Red Cross briefing on April 15th, the anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing.

“I was thanking Holy One for allowing us to be there (in Washington) to provide hope, help and healing to a very broken, grievous community and I asked Holy One to keep us safe and allow us to work in professional collegiality and in harmony,” said Demers. Several Red Cross disaster workers had indicated that they assisted in Boston, according to Demers. Demers noted that he started his prayer with Holy One because it was a name that people from all walks of faith could respect.



“We do that (pray) in a very prop­er, politically correct and inclusive way. When you’re a board certified chaplain, you have to learn to respect all faiths,” said Demers.

Demers recalls the biggest lesson he learned while serving as a lead chaplain in Washington for ten days from April 8 through 18.

“People that experience disaster this horrific have a resilience that they usually don’t know that they have. Help often comes from avenues that you never expected it to come from,” said Demers. “As disaster recovery volunteers, we must know that we can only do things in front of us, we can’t do everything.”

One of Demers’ roles was to serve on an Interdisciplinary Care Team as a chaplain.

“His (Demers) main duties were providing spiritual support, working with community churches and synagogues to provide guidance for continuing assistance over the next few months, assisting with funeral arrangements and helping the community on their path to recovery,” said Brittany Fowler, regional communications officer with the American Red Cross.

Text Only
Latest news
Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Airlines Halt Travel to Israel Amid Violence NYPD Chief Calls for 'use of Force' Retraining VA Nominee McDonald Goes Before Congress Bush: Don't Worry, Sugarland Isn't Breaking Up US Official: Most Migrant Children to Be Removed Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era Raw: First Lady Says `Drink Up' More Water Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Holder Urges Bipartisanship on Immigration Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball US Airlines Cancel Israel Flights Obama Signs Workforce Training Law Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City Diplomatic Push Intensifies to End War in Gaza Cat Fans Lap Up Feline Film Festival Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment
Facebook
Must Read
House Ads
NDN Video
Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl Swim Daily, Nina Agdal in the Cook Islands Guilty Dog Apologizes to Baby for Stealing Her Toy Prince George Turns 1 and is Already a Trendsetter Train Collides With Semi Truck Carrying Lighter Fluid Kanye West Tells-All on Wedding in "GQ" Interview Tony Dungy Weighs in on Michael Sam Scarlett Johansson Set To Marry In August New Star Wars Episode XII X-Wing Revealed Obama: Putin must push separatists to aid MH17 probe Michigan inmates no longer allowed to wear orange due to 'OITNB' Adam Levine Ties the Knot Sebastian The Ibis Walks Beautiful Bride Down The Aisle | ACC Must See Moment NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Faces of Souls Lost in Malaysian Plane Crash 105-year-old woman throws first pitch Man Creates Spreadsheet of Wife's Reasons for Turning Down Sex 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success Rory McIlroy struggles, surges, wins British Open
NDN Video
Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl Swim Daily, Nina Agdal in the Cook Islands Guilty Dog Apologizes to Baby for Stealing Her Toy Prince George Turns 1 and is Already a Trendsetter Train Collides With Semi Truck Carrying Lighter Fluid Kanye West Tells-All on Wedding in "GQ" Interview Tony Dungy Weighs in on Michael Sam Scarlett Johansson Set To Marry In August New Star Wars Episode XII X-Wing Revealed Obama: Putin must push separatists to aid MH17 probe Michigan inmates no longer allowed to wear orange due to 'OITNB' Adam Levine Ties the Knot Sebastian The Ibis Walks Beautiful Bride Down The Aisle | ACC Must See Moment NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Faces of Souls Lost in Malaysian Plane Crash 105-year-old woman throws first pitch Man Creates Spreadsheet of Wife's Reasons for Turning Down Sex 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success Rory McIlroy struggles, surges, wins British Open