We had the joy of commissioning Jean Shepherd as the Stephen Leader who will guide, train, and shepherd the Stephen Ministers in our parish to offer one-on-one care to other parishioners who are in a time of grief, transition, or in need of help in any way.
Jean’s dedication to training, learning, and offering her gifts and leadership to this program has enabled us to re-vitalize our Stephen Minister program which had once been an active part of our parish.
Stephen Ministry is the one-to-one lay caring ministry that takes place in congregations that use the Stephen Series system. Stephen Ministry congregations equip and empower lay caregivers—called Stephen Ministers—to provide high-quality, confidential, Christ-centered care to people who are hurting. Jean Shepherd, a trained Stephen Minister, participated in a seven-day Stephen Series Leader’s Training course in Pittsburgh this past summer to lead and train Stephen Ministers. Jean previously served as a Stephen Minister at St. Timothy’s, Herndon, VA. Stephen Ministers grow greatly as they learn about helping others—and they learn about themselves. As the hurting members of our congregation grow stronger through this caring ministry, the whole church is built up and made stronger. And, of course, we all can have the knowledge that when the pains of life come our way, someone will always be there, ready to care for us, to bring God’s love to us in a special, personal way. Jean will lead Stephen Minister training beginning in late January. The course which is typically taught in 20 weekly sessions, combines pre-class reading, devotions, lecture, video presentations, discussion, and skill practice.
Perhaps God is calling you to be one of these caring, committed servants who offer Christ’s love to those who are hurting. If you are interested in becoming a Stephen Minister, please contact Mother Barbara or Jean Shepherd.