While the energies of many United Methodists in Indiana are focusing on cleaning up water-soaked homes, others recognize that recovery from the devastating flooding in summer 2008 will mean more than mucking out and rebuilding. Survivors of disasters also will face unique emotional and spiritual challenges that unfold in the months of the recovery.

The United Methodist Committee on Relief and the Indiana Area Disaster Response Coordinators are helping clergy and lay leadership begin to address the spiritual and emotional needs of their communities with a basic training, "Calming After the Storm: Long-term Spiritual and Emotional Care Following Disaster" day-long workshop. This workshop from the United Methodist Committee on Relief is scheduled to be held on Wednesday, Dec. 3 and again on Friday, Dec. 5. Each of the day-long seminars are limited to 30 participants and will be led by UMCOR consultant the Rev. Mary Gaudreau. The same seminar will be offered in both locations.

Those who will benefit most from this experience are pastors, church staff and other church leaders, Stephen Ministers, laity, educators, counselors, disaster response workers and anyone concerned about the long-term emotional and spiritual impact of disasters. This workshop is open to all denominations and faiths.

Wednesday, Dec. 3 at First UMC, 103 Franklin Street in Valparaiso, Ind. from 10 a.m. through mid-afternoon, including lunch. Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. Planners suggest a $10 donation to cover lunch and snack costs. For reservations to the "Calming After the Storm" seminar in Valparaiso, contact Gary Peterson, North Indiana Disaster Response Coordinator at 260-437-1310.

Friday, Dec. 5 at Asbury UMC, 1751 27th Street in Columbus, Ind. from 10 a.m. through mid-afternoon, including lunch. Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. Planners suggest a $10 donation to cover lunch and snack costs. For reservations to the "Calming After the Storm" seminar in Columbus, contact Jenni Walker, South Indiana Resource Administrator, by e-mail at jenniwalker@mac.com or call 812-893-1760.