Stephen Ministry February 2024

This is a caring church!  We have shone one another friendship and loving concern through our history together.  Stephen Ministry is designed to extend that compassionate care on an organized, weekly basis for as long as an adult wants and needs it.

A person may be experiencing one of life’s challenges: feeling vulnerable when a personal relationship dissolves, a loved one dies, or a job is lost, or feeling overwhelmed when an adorable baby is born, a serious illness is diagnosed, or one’s house becomes too big to manage. The Stephen Minister listens with Christ-centered empathy as the care receiver shares concerns.  What happens is a trusting relationship builds, founded on grace-based acceptance.

It is a blessed opportunity for a care receiver (someone who is being helped) to unburden one’s heart to a Stephen Minister who is willing to listen, support, and help bear the burden as is directed in Galatians 6:2,” Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way, you will fulfill the law.”

Our new trainees, as with all current Stephen Ministers, will study researched-based and Christ-centered principles.  Stephen Ministers meet twice monthly for Peer Supervision where they offer one another support, guidance, and accountability.  Stephen Ministers preserve confidentiality by not using names or identifying details.  Both the recipient and the Stephen Minister grow spiritually as scriptures and prayers are shared every week.  

All of us in Stephen Ministry have expressed how we have been deeply impacted as lay-ministers.  God heals our care receivers’ hearts, and our faith grows stronger, as well.

How are YOU able to be a part of this powerful ministry?

Firstly, you all have supported Stephen Ministry as a part of the church’s budget since 2000.  Our $200 this year has partially paid for the continuing education book we are currently discussing, titled The Gift of Empathy, and funded the Journeying Through Grief booklets that Stephen Leader Trish Myers mails to our members over a year’s time when a loved one dies.  It will, also, pay for the training materials for our new class beginning soon. (The cost of $49.95 per kit has not increased since 2000.)

Secondly. You could suggest Stephen Ministry to someone you know who is hurting and would benefit from this Christ-centered interaction.

Talk to Pastor Trozzo or me.

Thirdly, you could think about becoming a Stephen Minister yourself or take the on-line training to become a Stephen Leader who helps administer the program. 

Lastly, you could pray for our new trainee classes, for the Stephen Ministers and their care receivers as they meet weekly, and for the Stephen Leaders as we guide this important program in the life of our congregation.