Put on, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassion. - Colossians 3:12
Christ Caring for People through People
Stephen Ministry is a pastoral care program of our congregation that equips lay persons to provide distinctively Christian one-to-one care to those who are experiencing stressful circumstances. We offer care to individuals both in our congregation and in the broader community.
Stephen Ministry is named after Stephen, one of the first deacons in the early church to be commissioned by the Apostles to care for the needs of church members. The Stephen Ministry program was started by Dr. Kenneth C. Haugk, an ordained minister and clinical psychologist, in 1973.
At St. Andrew's
The first class of Stephen Ministry began in October 1993. A group of 12 congregational members and two Stephen Leaders (who were trained in the St. Lois Missouri Head Office) began the process of covering the 50 hours of training.
Since then, 7 other classes have been trained in a similar fashion by 8 other Stephen Leaders
53 Stephen ministers have completed the training
13 Stephen Ministers are currently active.
Stephen Ministers are committed Christian people who...
♥express God's care through their care for others
♥receiver 50 hours of initial training in important caring ministry skills and concepts
♥are commissioned as Stephen Ministers after completing their initial training
♥visit another person regularly and dependably, offering Christian support
♥participate in regular support and supervision under the guidance of trained Stephen Leaders
♥are committed to preserving the confidential nature of the caring relationship
serve for at least two years
♥receive continuing education and skill building throughout their years of service.
Stephen Ministry Meets the Needs of People
There are times when each of us needs the care of another person, a Christian friend, a Stephen Minister.
These times include but are not limited to...
♥a stay in hospital
♥a terminal illness diagnosed for a member of our family or for ourselves
♥a time of grief due to death or a significant loss in our lives
♥when we are home-bound or move to a retirement or nursing home
♥when we lose our job
♥when we are dealing with new disabilities or are looking after a family member who has a disability
♥when we are facing a life transition, be it a new child, a new job, retirement, separation and divorce from our spouse
'Bear one another's burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ.'
Each of us face change differently, and some changes bring us into stress more than others. In Stephen Ministry we recognize that we are not only care-givers, we are also care receivers. We treat each person who asks for care as we would want to be treated. For this reason, we stress the confidentiality of our caring relationships. Those receiving care can be sure that their identity and what goes on in the caring relationship wil remain private.
'Encourage one another and build one another up.'
I Thessalonians 5:11
How Do I Reach a Stephen Minister?
When you need someone to talk to during dark times...a friend to listen, to encourage, to pray and to care...call our Stephen Ministry Coordinator, Janet McDowell at firstname.lastname@example.org . Great consideration and prayer will be given to selecting a Stephen Minister especially for you.