Surviving the Storms

Fall brings with it Hurricane Season.  Winter offers such events such as Snow-pocolypse.  And we are not even addressing the dreaded zombie invasion or Sharknado.  Recently, I came across 2011 Hurricane Irene related post which had previously appeared on my both my own blog and at  It has been edited for readability.

I am writing this Friday morning because who knows what Monday morning and an upcoming hurricane will bring…  Will there be power? Will there be road closures.  Will stores and restaurants be open?  Will there be cell phone coverage? Will there be internet connectivity?

Anyway, it occurs to me that the same steps involved in emergency preparedness are good steps to also be taken to ensure making it through any storm of life – emotional, professional, etc.




1. What is the Plan? – Some “storms” you cannot see coming, but often you can sense the change in the environment and/or hear reports of its approach. What is your plan regarding supplies and needs in time of crisis?  What will be your limits regarding “hunkering down” and the proper time for evacuation?

Determining these things in advance will make a difference.

2. Stick to the Plan – Whatever your decision is, stick to it. If you decide to leave town at the first sign of warning, then do so as planned. No dilly-dallying. Changing your mind or changing the plan often leads to unnecessary accidents. Then you are no longer prepared.

3. Supply the Plan – Winter Blizzards usually involve a “white sale” locally at the grocery stores. These involve a rush on the essentials of toilet paper, milk, and bread.  I will be out this morning for those supplies.  I’m making sure to have bottled water, just in case, and refilling the car’s gas tank. I will be making sure that there at least two books on reserve for entertainment and that candles are also available. Finally, I’ll be following my mother’s tradition. She bakes, so, my office mates should expect cookies and/or brownies when we return to the office.

4. Listen to Advisories –  Stay tuned to trusted sources of information as well local authorities. Your emergency plan has already determined your response to changes in conditions. Yet, you must keep your ears open for updates in your situation. Burring your head in the sands or living in denial will not serve you or your plan.

5. Watch Out for Your Neighbors – It is very easy to only think of self when a moment of crisis occurs.  Of course, you are not in this alone. Take care to be attentive to neighbors. Keep an eye out especially for “the least of these.”  Who are the senior citizens or those affected in harsher ways than yourself.

6. Stay Calm – Figure out how to best ride the storm out (brownies and cookies do make a difference!) For yourself as well as all others around you, maintain a calm demeanor. It is not only a smart practice, it also is a faith-driven expectation:

God is our refuge and our strength,
an ever-present help in distress.
Thus we do not fear,
though earth be shaken and mountains quake to the depths of the sea,
Though its waters rage and foam and mountains totter at its surging.
Streams of the river gladden the city of God,
the holy dwelling of the Most High.
God is in its midst; it shall not be shaken.
(Psalms 46

The same steps involved in emergency preparedness are good steps to also be taken to ensure making it through any storm of life – emotional, professional...

D. Scott Miller

D. Scott Miller is the dean of Catholic Youth Ministry bloggers which is a polite way of either saying that he is just plain old or has been blogging for a long time (since 2004.)

Scott recently married the lovely Anne and together they have five adult young people and also grandparent three delightful kids (so, maybe he is just plain old!) Scott presently serves at Saint John the Evangelist in Columbia, MD as the director of youth and young adult ministry.

He has previously served on the parish, regional, diocesan, and national levels as well as having taught within a catholic high school. He is one of the founders of RebuildMyChurch and has returned to posting regularly (keeping regular is important to old guys) at ProjectYM.

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