Swine Flu 2009 - A Faith Based Response
by The General Board of Discipleship of the United Methodist Church
The high profile of the Swine Flu outbreak has provoked understandable concern and worry about contact with people in public settings. It is natural that church leaders and members are wondering about the risk of participating in such events as mission trips, worship, and sharing the bread and cup of Holy Communion.
How do Christians continue doing what we do best - care for others - while protecting ourselves and our loved ones?
Remember that we are the hands & feet of Christ, and difficult times provide us the opportunity to brightly shine our light of Christian love and caring.
Do not be offended when friends or visitors take appropriate precautions and shy away from hugging you or shaking your hand when they come to your worship service.
Take care of yourself spiritually and physically. You cannot help others, or be a source of strength for your family or your community, if you are run down.
Remember that disease does not belong to one country, it is a global human issue and can start anywhere and in any country for many reasons. We are all God's children.
Get the facts from reliable sources, don't rely on rumor or second hand information.
If you are feeling ill or exhibiting flu like symptoms, staying home and not exposing others may be your greatest act of love today.
Consider ways your church can support low income workers in your community who are responsibly staying home from work when feeling ill. Many workers risk losing their wages or don't have adequate medical insurance.
Pray and reach out in love, without judgment and without fear.
Health Monitoring Sites for Swine "H1N1" Flu
These links are highly recommended for monitoring the Swine H1N1 Flu Outbreak on an hourly or daily basis.
Track the flu: This site offers users Swine H1N1 Flu status in your state.
Keep up-to-date: CDC offers constant updates on the Swine H1N1 Flu as it emerges.
From the CDC: CDC web site on Swine H1N1 Flu health and mitigation information.
Influenza Twitter Feed; Twitter updates from the CDC on Preparedness & Response
NYC Influenza Updates; From the NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene
Global Outbreak-WHO: The World Health Organization’s situational updates on spread, and on mitigation efforts on Swine H1N1 Flu.
(Please check with your team leader)