Crisis, Community and the Common GoodRev Crebbin at Community Forum

by Susan Chormann

Pictured in Photo left to right: Ann Budner, ABUW Board; Beth Farley, ABUW Board; Jane Shanley Brown, ABUW Board; Rev. Matthew Crebbin, Sr. Pastor Newtown Congregational Church; Rev. Andrew Armstrong, Acton Congregational Church; Ebit Speers, ABUW President

Rev. Matt Crebbin, Senior Pastor at Newtown Congregational Church, spoke of the power of relationships when disaster strikes, at the ABUW Spring Community Forum in May, attended by numerous local government officials, police, school administrators, the faith community, and community service organizations.

In particular, he emphasized how these relationships allowed Newtown to respond to and manage the horrific events of last December. Rev. Crebbin shared what he and his community learned from the disaster. Having trusting relationships in place among the people who live and work together is critical. Knowing each other and knowing we can depend on each other for support prepares for the unexpected, gets us through a crisis, and ultimately enables us to heal and recover.

He spoke of preparing for the unexpected, how to find the resources they needed, vicarious trauma and getting back to “Normal”. He shared the importance of relationship building before a disaster strikes and living in the midst of “less than perfect.”

Rev. Crebbin ended his remarks saying "Be Gentle, one with another."

“We were honored that Rev. Crebbin took the time to share these critical insights with our community,” said Rachel Sagan, ABUW Executive Director. “ Our own practice of "locavore philanthropy" is a key ingredient to crisis management. Locavore philanthropy is proving itself to be an effective and rewarding strategy for serving and enriching communities like ours.”

Annual forums hosted by the ABUW bring together key representatives from important local organizations and create partnership to solve the critical issues our towns face today. From domestic violence to hunger relief, these forums have resulted in significant solutions with lasting impact.


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