Christ Caring for People Through People
From Brokenness To Wholeness
Equipping Lay people to provide a continuing effective and caring ministry to meet the needs of people
IS ANYBODY LISTENING?
When you or someone you know is hurting.
"I had lots of people around me, but felt like the loneliest person in the world. Everyone told me what they thought I should do, but no one wanted to hear me."
"My Stephen Minister is very special to me. I was listened to, cared about, prayed for, taught, loved and nurtured. I have a true sister/brother in Christ."
A Stephen Minister is a trained lay member of the congregation who will visit with you weekly, listen, pray with and for you and offer Christian love and respect. They are caring supportive Christian people who have a desire to be with you in a time of need, grief or crisis.
Do I Really Need Help?
- Am I confused about events in my life?
- Do I feel like I have lost control of my life and my problems?
- Do I doubt God's presence and love for me?
- Am I hurting?
- Do my job worries seem too great to handle? Are they getting me down?
- Am I feeling lonely? Do I often wish I had someone to share my thoughts with?
- Have there been changes in my life that have caused readjustments in my lifestyle?
- Am I having difficulty making decisions and finding answers?
- Have I recently suffered a loss?
- Do I ever feel like I just want some one to listen?
Can A Stephen Minister Help Me?
"I didn't know what to expect from my Stephen Minister, but he put me at ease. I had a friend I could trust and who really cared about me. My helper showed me how to work things out for myself and had the patience to let me do it."
"When I really needed a friend, my Stephen Minister was there. We cried together a lot, prayed together, talked and now we laugh together."
. . . "I wanted answers and she asked questions. She knew how to see things a new way and her questions helped me find my own answers. I thought God had forgotten me, but my Stephen Minster helped me grow close to God. She loves me. So does God. So do I."
"I wish the whole world was made up of people like my helper . . . Christians with God's own heart."
WHAT IS STEPHEN MINISTRY ?
Stephen Ministry is...
- A lay, caring ministry in which one person reaches out to another in time of need.
- An ongoing helping relationship - people who need help, receive help.
- A meaningful way for our parish to more fully use our talents in sharing one another's burdens and joys.
A Stephen Minister is...
- A caring Christian - desiring to offer his/her support to others in time of need.
- A sharing Christian - bringing who he or she is to each helping relationship, as a partner in another's life experiences.
- A trained Christian - having developed his/her helping skills through intensive course work.
- A dedicated Christian - commissioned by our parish to confidential, in-depth caring.
A Stephen Minister is not...
- A professional counselor or psychologist.
- A social worker providing lots of physical services.
- An expert in law, finances, church doctrine, etc.
- A brief superficial visitor, "touching base" with people now and then.
What does it take to become a Stephen Minister
Okay, admit it . Stephen Ministry has crossed your mind a few times. You might even have picked up a brochure or talked with your pastor about it.. But now you want to take a closer look at the idea of becoming a Stephen Minister. You're wondering: Is this right for me? Following are some guidelines that might help you in your decision making.
Gifts - A Stephen Minister is a person with the gift of mercy, who shows compassion and gives encouragement to and intercedes for those he or she cares for. Many Stephen Ministers say that they receive much more from the caring relationship with their care receiver than they give.
Commitment - A Stephen Minister devotes time, energy, and resources to this ministry. In return, a Stephen Minister has the chance to participate in meaningful ministry, make a major difference in another person's life, and grow as a joyous child of God.
Training - A Stephen Minister completes 50 hours of training before ever meeting with a care receiver. He or she learns about listening, assertiveness, confidentiality, and many other aspects of care giving. After completing the initial training, there is continuing education. Stephen Ministers find that their relationships become richer and deeper at home, church, at work and with friends.
Dedicated Service - A Stephen Minister serves wholeheartedly. This isn't a casual ministry. It involves prayer, thought, consideration, study, and commitment. In return, the Stephen Minister receives grateful thanks from his or her care receiver, our Stephen Leaders, the congregation, and our Lord.
Accountability - A Stephen Minister is accountable to God, the congregation, the Stephen Leaders, the other Stephen Ministers, and the care receiver. In return, he or she receives support, encouragement, and guidance in Small Group Peer Supervision.
Continuous Learning - A Stephen Minister is open to adjusting and adapting his or her care giving to fit the needs of the care receiver. He or she learns more about care giving at each meeting with a care receiver and at each supervision session. Stephen Ministry is an experience of continuous learning, growth, and joy.
The Holy Spirit may be calling you to the joy, commitment, growth, meaning, training, service, and care of being a Stephen Minister. Pray for God's guidance as you consider this opportunity. For more information, call 314-843-3245 ext 308.