Pastor Stephen's Blog
Saturday, January 29 2022
Recording In Progress!
What a day! I had a great day with Jim Chapman of Local Leaders the Podcast! Thank you Jim for your professionalism, sharing your expertise with us novices and making things happen!
Recording the audiobook for author Stephen A. Hebert whose amazing book "Covid-19 One Family’s Journey" is a huge hit worldwide! If you would like to record your audiobook with Envision Media Production (A subsidiary of Envision Podcast Studio Rentals Denham Springs) reach out to us!
Saturday, January 29 2022
Announcements & Updates
All sorts of good things are happening these days, Praise the Lord!
First off, as of 01/22/2022 eBooks are available for purchase! The Kindle, Nook Book and Rakuten Kobo versions have been released and can be found at the links below.
Secondly, as of today, the Audiobook recordings have begun! Please be praying for this process, as this a completely new experience. The Audiobook should be available for purchase in the next few weeks, and we will post updates as soon as new information comes out.
Thirdly, the first official book signing is scheduled for Saturday, February 12th at Oak Point Fresh Market in Denham Springs! I will be there from 9am until 3pm to visit with readers, to take pictures and to sign books. Mark your calendars. I hope to see your there!
Amazon Author Page
Apple Books Preview https://books.apple.com/us/book/covid-19/id1604713336
Christian Faith Publishing https://www.christianfaithpublishing.com/books/?book=covid-19
Kindle Version https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09QC8HYK2?ref=KC_GS_GB_US
Press Releases are on their way! We will post them as soon as they are available.
These are exciting times! Thank you for your prayers and support.
Monday, January 17 2022
CHRISTIAN FAITH PUBLISHING, INC.
For starters, here is a quick review of my timeline recapping the last year and a half of our family’s journey dealing with the COVID-19 virus and the progress that was made with writing and publishing the book, “COVID-19 One Family’s Journey”.
I have worked throughout the pandemic taking care of COVID patients since January of 2020, even before we knew what we were dealing with. After spending an average of eighty hours a week in the various units, inevitably, I caught COVID-19 and was infected in September of 2020, well before the vaccines were readily available and at a time when we had very few medications to treat the virus as well. I spent a month in the hospital, three weeks in ICU and eight days on a ventilator, and afterwards it took me three months to recover.
Before I ended up on the vent, I had started journaling a little, and I was jotting down some notes in a composition notebook my good friend Bronson Arnoult had brought me. Once I made it home, I spent a lot of my time eating and sleeping and also exercising with my Physical Therapist, Meagan. Much of the remaining time, I spent reviewing my medical records, reading all of the social media posts that had been submitted during my hospitalizations and writing out my testimony of what I had experienced day to day as the pieces of the puzzle were coming together. Once I combined all of these things, and I added the pictures, all of the information just erupted into the makings of a very strong outline and a first draft of a manuscript and book. Once I had my hospitalizations all properly laid out, I began to make journal entries documenting my day to day recovery. I went back to work as an RN on the COVID units just before Christmas of 2020, and just after the New Year, my part-time position at the Church transitioned into a full-time role as an Associate Pastor and Pastoral Care Minister. I was pretty excited.
Over those next few months, I was working my two jobs again, and I was working hard, but I was also getting as much constructive criticism as I could as I revised and tweaked the drafts of the manuscript over and over again. By May of 2021, I had enough encouragement and support from my family, my friends and our Church family to move forward with publishing the book. That is when I started working with Christian Faith Publishing, Inc. (CFP) The board of review at CFP approved the manuscript within twenty-four hours of submission, and within the week the process had officially begun. I was very excited!
I have been pleased working with CFP. They have been supportive during this process, and although this was my first time publishing a book, they made the process bearable, and they kept me moving forward and in the proper direction. I have found, the most exciting part has been the here and now. They have distributed the book to over forty different platforms, and they have made it available in hardback, softback, a Kindle version and even one for the Nook. They are currently working on the national press releases now. Click the link below to visit my book and author page on the CFP website.
Friday, January 14 2022
DENHAM SPRINGS, La. (BRPROUD) — Two years after catching COVID the first time, a local pastor found himself positive once again. Stephen A. Hebert says he has a message of hope after nearly dying in a hospital bed.
“I actually was dying in my house and I knew it and my wife knew it too,” he explained.
Hebert said he caught COVID the first time in September of 2020, while on the job. He’s been a registered nurse for over 30 years, and also serves as a pastor at Live Oak Church.
“I completely lost my taste and smell and at that point, that’s never happened before it’s a pretty distinct feeling and I knew then that it was going to be COVID,” Hebert said.
He almost lost his life to the virus more than once. His condition got worse, and Herbert was eventually put on a ventilator in the hospital.
“We really didn’t have a whole lot of medicine to treat the virus, and they wouldn’t let you have any visitors at all,” he said.
Hebert facetimed with family when he had the energy, and a friend gave him a journal to pass the time. He got better after a few weeks and had written enough to fill a book. Hebert said he’s thankful for every breath.
“You don’t realize how much of a blessing that is to be able to take in a deep breath and to be able to let it out,” he said.
Hebert decided to write a book about his journey and recovery, called “COVID-19, One Family’s Journey.”
“I had a lot of time on my hands,” Hebert said. “And it is truly a surviving case that I give credit to God for.”
Hebert then caught COVID again! This time his family caught the virus too. He had to go to the ER for treatment once again but his recovery was a lot quicker than before.
“Within 12 hours I could feel the tide turning,” he explained.
Hebert said he wouldn’t be alive without a little hope and a whole lot of praying, and now hopes his story will spread a lot of faith to those going through the same thing.
For more information on Stephen A. Hebert’s book, click here.
Hebert also has a Blog filled with stories from his recovery. For more information, click here.
Wednesday, January 12 2022
STEPHEN HEBERT RELEASES COVID-19: ONE FAMILY’S JOURNEY
In the January 2022 edition of the Alumni Newsletter for Asbury Theological Seminary, in the "Updates, Events and Publications" section (Published January 4, 2022), the book, "COVID-19 One Family's Journey" was presented as topic number six on the page with the following synopsis and details:
Enjoy reading this dynamic story about the author, Stephen Andrew Hebert, his life, his careers as a pastor and registered nurse, his walk with God, and his family’s journey as he went from being a frontline caregiver to becoming a critical care patient who was fighting for his life.
First, hear about the significant stories and pivotal moments that motivated Stephen toward a deeper relationship with the Lord and a career in health care, which was later followed by a call to pastoral ministry. Then take the walk with him as he leads the reader along through his initial forty-day battle with the COVID-19 virus and his invigorating vision he experienced while his life and his lungs were being supported by the ventilator. All of this led to a three-month recovery period, which was full of hilltops and valley bottoms but consistently driven by the hand of God while being shielded by His unfailing grace.
Read the inserts by his family and friends as they share their reflections and they discuss their experiences and their pain while being fully invested and completely engaged in Stephen’s well-being and recovery. Finally, Stephen acknowledges the intersections he and his family encountered while dealing with the COVID-19 virus and its long-hauling aftermath; he discusses the implications and the impact that each had on them at this juncture in their journey of life.
Please see here for more information or to purchase the book.
Visit the ATS Alumni link below for more information:
Wednesday, January 12 2022
This middle picture of this collage is a paved track at our park just across the street from my neighborhood in Walker., Louisiana It is a quiet, beautiful place, and this is where I spent most of my time building up my strength, my confidence and my stamina when I was recovering from a very tough battle with COVID-19 in the fall of 2020. The Lord was so very good to me during this time. He never left my side as I fought to get my strength back, and He sent the right people in my life at the right time that had the knowledge and compassion I needed to encourage me to press on. The two people that played a big role in my recovery were my Physical Therapist, Meagan Goodly Dupuy (seen in the picture on the left) and my good friend and colleague, Registered Nurse, Victor Carney (seen in the picture on the right). Of course my wife, family and friends as well as our Live Oak Church family overwhelmed me with love and grace too.
By this time last year, I was back on my feet, back at work Nursing and Pastoring and getting stronger by the day. I praise God for His Amazing Grace and Love, as well as His generous Provisions as He trickles them out along my path and along my journey. I promise you, in this New Year, if you take time and look closely, you will see that He is doing the same for you as well. Give Him your heart today, and trust Him with every aspect of your life. I assure you He will help you press on too, and He will change everything.
The Apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 3 : 13 -14, "...Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus."
May God Bless you and your families in the New Year.
Monday, January 10 2022
My heart goes out to any patient or family member that has had to make one of the most difficult decisions while fighting the COVID-19 virus and this is having to decide whether or not to ventilate a loved one who is severely infected and critically ill from the virus. I can offer three unique perspectives on this topic for anyone who is exploring options.
First off, I am a Registered Nurse who has worked COVID-19 Units throughout the pandemic. Secondly, I am also a Hospice Chaplain and Pastoral Care Minister who specializes in grief support and counseling for parishioners and families in our surrounding community who are grieving the loss of loved ones. And finally, I am also a COVID-19 Survivor who had to make this same difficult decision in a life or death situation, and due to God’s amazing grace I am still here and able to share this response.
Throughout the year of 2020 and the first three quarters of 2021, I spent most of my time working COVID Units and various Rehabilitation Units where recovering COVID-19 patients would go for reconditioning. I did fairly well until September of 2020 when I got infected. I spent a month in the hospital and three weeks in ICU. I was near death four or five times, and at one point I had to choose whether to go on a ventilator or be kept comfortable while I passed away. This is also known as Palliative Care. Based on my particular circumstances, I chose to continue to fight the good fight and attempt to recover by being ventilated. I was on the vent (intubated) for a total of eight days, and this decision played a big part in saving my life. Otherwise, I would not have been able to share this blog with you. A word to the wise, please do not assume or make others have assumptions that ventilators for COVID patients are bad. They have saved lives in this awful mess of a pandemic, and I am one of them. For those of you who lost loved one(s) to COVID-19 even after going on a ventilator, my heart truly breaks for you. Please understand though, without the ventilator they would have only died sooner. Do Not regret your decision! Do Not beat yourself up for choosing the ventilator. I have met multiple families that are having trouble with having made this decision. In most cases, the ventilator is usually the last resort, and it gives the patient a fighting chance to potentially beat the virus and survive!
The Bible makes it clear that God ordains all of the days of our lives (Psalm 139), and He and only He makes decisions of that magnitude. Please find peace in that although your loved one's passing may have caught you off guard; it was no surprise to our Creator and Lord. Please know, you and your family will remain in my prayers now and in the days to come. These last two years have been very difficult on all of us, but I assure you God remains on His throne. All of this will be used for the purposes of good, and through our faith and trust in our Creator above, it is only a matter of time before we will see His amazing glory! Stand firm and be still. Let us let Him be God, and may we continue in our obedience to His will in Jesus' name.
God Bless You All!
*For more information about the book, "COVID-19 One Family's Journey", click the link below:
Wednesday, January 05 2022
THE OMICRON VARIENT IS HERE
Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for Sotrovimab for the Treatment of COVID-19
Well folks, ringing in the New Year took on a whole new meaning for us in 2022. Just last week I started another roller coaster ride with the Omicron variant of COVID-19. Although after my near death infection with the original strain of COVID-19 in September of 2020, my antibodies remained sky high even until late 2021 when I last had my bloodwork checked. What I have recently learned is the Omicron variant is highly contagious but a much less lethal variant. I have also learned that it bypasses natural immunity that many of us have earned from our past experience with COVID-19 and any type of vaccine coverage, fully vaccinated or not. After what we all have been through in our communities, as a nation and people of the world, the recent uprising in cases, hospitalizations and even some deaths has invited all of those past stressors and anxieties to come flooding back.
After developing symptoms of a severe headache, fever, congestion and bad muscle aches, I knew something was going on, and I needed to get swabbed. I went by our clinic and was tested, and within minutes I was told I was positive for COVID. I was dumbfounded at first, and I was truly shocked to hear the news, but as it began to sink in, I knew the only option was getting to the emergency room and try to obtain a monoclonal antibody infusion as soon as possible. My NP was reassuring me that it was going to be okay, and she gave me a well-needed dose of my own medicine and reassured me of her faith as well as my own.
I headed over to the emergency room, I got signed in and worked up and after about 5 hours of waiting, I was able to get the needed infusion started. I was given the drug Sotrovimab which is under Emergency Use Authorization for treatment of COVID-19. I qualified by having COVID-19 positive results, and I was considered high risk of progression to severe COVID-19, including hospitalization or death due to a few comorbidities I carry with me. The fact that I was in the hospital for a month, spending three weeks in ICU and eight days on the ventilator during my first experience with COVID-19 was pretty much a shoe-in as well. I received the infusion intravenously, I was observed for an hour afterwards, and then I was released to go home and rest.
For the next few days I spent a lot of time in bed trying to stay hydrated and loaded with vitamins, but I could clearly tell there was a battle going on inside of me. The muscle aches and severe fatigue were definitely the symptoms that stood out this time especially for the first few days, but after that it seemed to shift to symptoms of sinusitis and that of the common cold. Many members of my family and friends were sick at this time too, and I was hearing of more and more cases by the day of those who were infected.
Laura Ingraham interviewed Dr. Robert Malone, the mRNA vaccine platform inventor, and he said, “Data is already in. Both the double and triple vaccinations is not protecting you from Omicron. Now here’s the good news – very low disease, highly infectious. It looks an awful lot to the experienced vaccinologists like a live, attenuated virus vaccine that you might design for purpose.” On this same topic, he previously alluded to our Creator giving us the best Christmas present we could ask for. He has been banned from most media platforms over the weekend, but the professional interviews are everywhere. Laura Ingram’s show has these interviews to watch as well as Joe Rogan’s Podcast on GETTR.
The Ingram Angle link is as follows: https://video.foxnews.com/v/6289901663001?playlist_id=5622526903001#sp=show-clips
Now that I am recovering from this second experience and I will be getting out of quarantine in the next day or so, I must say as bad enough as it was, this round was only a fraction of the pain and suffering compared to the first roller coaster ride we experienced with the original strain in September of 2020. Knowing that in God’s Word He promises in Romans 8:28, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” It doesn’t mention that All things will be good, but instead that He will work out All things out for our good. I love Him and have been called according to His purpose. How about you? Romans 8:31 says, “What then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us who can be against us?” These are questions we should be asking ourselves especially when dealing with the topic of COVID.
I am so thankful for my family and friends. I am so thankful for our Church family and all of you, and I pray that 2022 will bring you great joy and blessings as the Lord fulfills His promises in your life! I am also so thankful that my family and I are starting the New Year off with a fresh set of antibodies and another dose of God-given natural immunity!