Why Lay Ministry? Why Stephen Ministry?

Stephen Ministry is based on the idea that all Christians are ministers. The responsibility for passing on God’s love is not just for a chosen few. People with gifts for caring can use those gifts to bring Christ’s love to individuals in our congregation and community.

Stephen Ministers are well-trained to provide emotional and spiritual care. They learn what to say and do – and not to say and do – when people are struggling with a wide range of life difficulties. Through Stephen Ministry sessions Stephen Ministers become part of a community of Christian caregivers who provide mutual support, pray for one another, and help each other to grow.

People typically become Stephen Ministers out of a desire to help others, but along the way they find that they experience tremendous growth themselves- personally, spiritually, and relationally.

Our church’s Stephen Ministry Team is planning a new training class, beginning the week of January 22, 2024. The training is very interactive and engaging. Participants will learn, grow, become part of a caring Christian community, and have a lot of fun along the way! Plus, relational skills learned will be applicable to all facets of life.

Becoming a Stephen Minister involves a commitment of preparation and ongoing support. Training will be once a week (at a time best for everyone) for 2½ hours, from January through May. The new class of Stephen Ministers will be commissioned during a worship service in June.

New Stephen Ministers will be matched with a care receiver and begin serving in ministry. All lay-ministers meet together to receive ongoing support and guidance in supervision and continuing education sessions on the second and fourth Wednesdays of every month.

Stephen Ministry is an important way Saint Matthew Church carries out our mission. Think of the hurting people in our congregation and community

  • experiencing grief.
  • dealing with a major illness.
  • caring for a loved one with a chronic condition.
  • picking up the pieces after a divorce or broken relationship.
  • coping with the pain of unemployment or financial difficulties.
  • struggling with infertility, miscarriage, or pregnancy complications.
  • facing other life difficulties.

To meet these needs, we need additional Stephen Ministers. We need people with the gifts of caring, compassion, patience, faith, and listening who feel called to serve, who want to make a difference in people’s lives, and who want to be part of a life-transforming ministry.

Please seriously pray about and consider applying to become a Stephen Minister. Applications should be submitted by November 30, 2023 so that interviews can be scheduled with applicants, and training materials ordered by December 29th.

For more information contact Trish Myers and Sue Kuhn, Stephen Leaders