Gardner-Webb Professor Shares Videos in Spanish on How to Face Current Crisis

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Divinity School’s Dr. Hebert Palomino Offers Practical Advice from Pastoral Care Perspective

A photo of Dr. Hebert Palomino presenting a counseling videoBOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—As emails referring to the Coronavirus pandemic began to fill Dr. Hebert Palomino’s inbox earlier in March, he wanted to respond in a timely manner. Many of the questions were the same and related to facing the current crises while providing care to others. Palomino, professor of pastoral care and counseling at Gardner-Webb University, also serves as member care coordinator for missionaries in the Americas with the International Mission Board. In addition, he trains and assists other Hispanic missionaries who serve in the 10/40 window, which covers portions of North Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

Because of the numerous requests, Palomino’s wife suggested he respond with a video explaining in Spanish what a crisis is and how to face it. “Once the first video went out, people started asking for the next one,” Palomino offered. “So, I took it as a project. The videos are on YouTube and have been very well received because of the non-technical language. They are practical, reaching all kinds of people, regardless of their religious orientation. The videos are not religious, but spiritual. In each one, I paraphrase a Bible verse, according to the video’s focus. Also, the name of Gardner-Webb University is there. As a professor in the School of Divinity, I feel and believe that this project is an extension of who we are: Serving the local church and our community in all times, more so in the middle of crisis.”

Before coming to Gardner-Webb, Palomino served as a Baptist missionary to Peru and Paraguay for 25 years and taught at the Baptist seminaries there. He has also served as pastor in churches in Colombia and the United States. At GWU, he teaches a variety of pastoral care and counseling courses, including “Introduction to Pastoral Care & Counseling,” “Pastoral Care of Families,” “Crisis Intervention,” and others. He has authored two books in Spanish, “Introduction to Christian Counseling” and “Pastoral Care for the New Millennium,” and published diverse media materials on the family in Spanish.

a screenshot of a video made by Dr. Hebert PalaminoPalomino will post a new video each week to the YouTube channel: Floreciendo con Olga. Below is the Spanish title and English description of the videos that are currently available.

1: What is a crisis?/Que es una crisis?: Palomino defines crisis and shares that a crisis is not only defined by the event, but by how we respond to it. He suggests that we shouldn’t view a crisis as just a danger but as an opportunity that challenges us to be creative and proactive.

2: What to wait for in the middle of a crisis?/Que esperar en medio de una crisis?: “Every person responds differently to a crisis and there are several factors of why,” Palomino stated. “I introduce the audience to the different variables that influence how people respond to a crisis. I provide tips on how to respond to the way a person is responding to the crisis.”

3: How to deal with decompensating emotions—fear?/Como manejar emociones descompensantes—miedo?: Decompensating means to lose the ability to maintain normal or appropriate psychological defenses, sometimes resulting in depression and anxiety. In this video, Palomino assures his audience that there are no negative emotions, but simply, emotions. “I talk about the first emotion: fear, and how it works in our brain and how several hormones produce changes in the body, “ he noted. “What we experience emotionally, the body interprets physically. At the end, I provide some practical ways to face and deal with fear.”

4: How to deal with Sadness & Anger?/ Como manejar emociones descompensantes—enojo & tristeza?: “In this video, I define sadness and anger and make a difference between anger vs. aggression; and sadness vs. depression,” Palomino described. “Again, I provide some tips on how to handle these two emotions and stay healthy.”

Palomino said he’s had requests for the videos in English and hopes that someone will provide them. “We, as caregivers and believers in general, must be ready to provide tools and walk with people in the midst of this critical time,” Palomino affirmed. “If you have some Latino contacts, please share these with them. The Latino community, because of the language barrier for some of them, doesn’t have too much access to quality information like this.”

Learn more about the GWU School of Divinity.

Located in the North Carolina foothills, Gardner-Webb University is a private, Christian, liberal arts university. Gardner-Webb emphasizes a strong student-centered experience and rigorous academics to prepare students to become effective leaders within the global community. Ignite your future at Gardner-Webb.edu.