Stephen Ministry is a one-on-one ministry provided by lay people who have been trained to do confidential, in-depth caring. If you are in need of a Stephen minister, please contact the pastor.


Q1. What is Stephen Ministry?
*A special ministry in which one Christian reaches out to another in time of need - in loneliness, depression, bereavement, hospitalization, divorce and aging.
*A structured program of training and preparation for a caring relationship.
*A meaningful way of our church to use more fully our many talents in sharing one another's burdens and joys.
Q2. Who are Stephen Ministers?
*Members of our congregation who have developed their gifts for caring through intensive training.
*Christians who give their time and concern in order to show others the love of Christ.
*Workers our congregation has formally commissioned to do confidential, in depth caring.
*Stephen ministers are not professional psychologists; experts in law, medicine, or church doctrine; or social workers with access to extensive physical services. But neither are they superficial "visitors" who merely "drop-in" from time to time.
Q3. What kind of commitment does a Stephen minister make?
Stephen Ministers commit two years to the program. These years include -
*50 hours of initial training over a five-month period.
*A commissioning service in which the Stephen Minister promises to serve faithfully and the congregation promises to be supportive.
*After commissioning, two meetings a month of at least two hours for guidance and further education.
*Regular visits with the person receiving care. A Stephen Minister experiences growth in the understanding of his or her own Christian calling as well as the privilege of working closely with others in helping relationships. Skills acquired in training apply not only to lay caring ministry but also to everyday life experience and relationships with others.
Q4. How are Stephen Ministers trained?
Before beginning their work as caregiver, Stephen Ministers receive fifty hours training, based solidly on Biblical testimony and drawing from the best tools of the health and psychological sciences. The training topics help Stephen Ministers learn how to put their technology into practice. Some of the topics are: The Art of Listening; How to Use the Bible with Others; Confidentiality; Ministry to the Dying, the Depressed, Older Persons, the Bereaved. Throughout their service, Stephen Ministers receive continuing education in a variety of related subjects.
Q5. Does the Stephen Ministry replace the Pastoral Ministry of our pastors?
No. The Stephen Ministry expands the ministry of our pastors by providing more workers in the Body of Christ. Caregiving is a pastor's job, but the pastor often does not have enough time to minister effectively to all needs of the congregation. Another part of the pastor's job is to "equip the saints" - all of the members of the congregation - to provide this kind of care for one another. In doing so, the caregiving that can be done is greatly multiplied.