Stephen Ministry

STEVENMINISTRY

 

What is Stephen Ministry?

Stephen Ministers care for people facing tough times.

A Stephen Minister Is…

  • A child of God who walks beside a person who is hurting
  • A congregation member with gifts for caregiving, who was carefully selected to serve in this role
  • A lay person who has received 50 hours of training in providing emotional and spiritual care
  • A caring, Christian friend, who listens, cares, prays supports, encourages, and maintains confidentiality
  • Someone who will “be there” for his or her care receiver, meeting faithfully for about an hour each week, for as long as there’s a need
  • Always paired with care receivers of the same sex

Confidentiality is a cornerstone of Stephen Ministry and is emphasized in both training and supervision. Stephen Ministers do not share what is discussed in their caring relationships.

Pastors will always be on the front lines of care, especially during times of crisis. But there are always many more needs for ongoing, one-to-one care than pastors can effectively meet by themselves.

Stephen Ministers provide a biblical solution – equipping God’s people for ministry. Gifted lay people are trained to support and extend the care that pastors provide. Stephen Ministers reach out with God’s love to people who are hurting – both congregation members and nonmembers alike.  Stephen Ministry is a confidential ministry: The identity of those receiving care and what takes place in each caring relationship remains private.

There are times when every one of us experiences difficulties and challenges in life – times when we could benefit from the support of a caring Christian friend. Stephen Ministers are ready to provide the emotional and spiritual care we need when faced with a crisis or difficulty, such as —

  • The loss of a loved one, divorce, separation, failed relationships, family stress
  • Hospitalization, serious or chronic illness, aging, recovery after an accident or disaster
  • Spiritual crisis, loneliness or discouragement, disability
  • Unemployment, job loss, relocation
  • Birth, adoption, miscarriage, infertility
  • Caregiver stress

There are some challenges that Stephen Ministers are NOT equipped to deal with, including

  • Minors
  • Couples. Each person must have their own Stephen Minister
  • Those at risk of hurting themselves or others
  • Those in need of mental health treatment, therapy, or medications
  • When necessary, Stephen Ministers will refer their care receivers to health professionals or counselors.

If you have a friend or family member who could use a Stephen Minister, first talk with that person about Stephen Ministry. Once that person is aware of the program and is interested in having a Stephen Minister, they must contact us directly.

  • If you – or someone you know – could benefit from the care of a Stephen Minister
  • If you are interested in possibly becoming a Stephen Minister
  • If you have any other questions about Stephen Ministry

….talk with our Parish Nurse, Mary Ann Devig, at 701-772-4897

The Stephen Ministry website, www.stephenministries.org, is another great source of information.

The Stephen Ministry logo symbolizes that we all are broken people and that it is only through the cross of Jesus that we are made whole.