Care & Support

Let us walk with you

We are here to help

As the COVID-19 pandemic goes on, the needs for care continue to grow in congregations and communities everywhere. People are struggling with a variety of challenges. Many people are feeling very disconnected and are having a tough time right now.

Are you or someone you know experiencing Pandemic Fatigue?

  • Isolation and Loneliness
  • Anxiety Over Health
  • Grief due to Many Different Kinds of Losses
  • Tension from Juggling Work, Childcare, and Schooling
  • Financial Strain or Job Loss
  • Uncertainty about the Future
  • Other Unexpected Life Challenges

If so, you don’t have to face it alone. Our Stephen Ministers are ready to listen, care, encourage, and provide emotional and spiritual support. A Stephen Minister is available to meet with you privately—by phone, by video chat, or if safely possible, in-person – to offer care and support. It’s free and completely confidential. We now have a new, dedicated, confidential voicemail to ask questions regarding Stephen Ministry or to request a Stephen Minister. Call us at (925) 344-6831.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

What is Stephen Ministry?

Stephen Ministry offers a proven and effective way to organize, equip, and supervise a team of congregation members—called Stephen Ministers—to provide high-quality, one-to-one, Christ-centered care to people in the congregation and the community experiencing life difficulties.

FAQs

Do I need a Stephen Minister?

Do you need to talk to someone who knows how to listen?  Would you like to talk with a qualified person about a personal situation in your life? Are you looking for a caring person to help you through a personal crisis? Stephen Ministry is a free and confidential program that provides one-to-one Christian care to hurting people within our congregation and surrounding community.

How can I tell if I really need to talk?
  • Do I feel like I have lost control of my life and my problems?
  • Do I often feel overwhelmed?
  • 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 someone to listen?
Who is a Stephen Minister and how are they trained?

Stephen Ministers are committed Christian men and women who:

  • Express God’s care through their lives to others
  • Receive 50 hours of initial training in important caring ministry skills including: How to listen; how to deal with feelings; how to be professional; how to express honesty, warmth, and care; how to help in times of crisis; how to minister to those dealing with grief, divorce, death and dying, depression, illness, aging, hospitalization, and many other areas
  • Are commissioned as Stephen Ministers after completing their initial training
  • Visit his or her care receiver regularly and dependably
  • Participate in regular support and supervision twice a month under the guidance of trained Stephen Leaders for purposes of ongoing evaluation
  • 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
  • Recognize when a care receiver’s needs go beyond the care a Stephen Minister can provide and where and how to refer the care receiver for additional care.
  • How does the Stephen Series work and how are Stephen Leaders trained?
  • Stephen Leaders attend a seven-day Leader’s Training Course, taught by pastors and clinical psychologists from the Stephen Ministries' St. Louis faculty.  They in turn provide 50 hours of training for lay people who feel called to be Stephen Ministers. Upon completion of their training, Stephen Leaders then link each Stephen Minister with a care receiver – a member of the congregation or community who is in need of quality Christian care. A Stephen Minister is normally assigned to only one care receiver at a time and meets with the care receiver for an average of about one hour each week.
Is what I tell a Stephen Minister kept in confidence? 

Stephen Ministers pledge a vow of confidentiality regarding anything discussed between an individual and their Stephen Minister. The only exceptions are when a possible suicide or harm to another person exists. The reputation and integrity of the Stephen Ministry program depends on that vow of confidentiality.

There may, on occasion, be times when a care receiver is asked to give permission for the Stephen Minister to consult with a pastor or a Stephen Leader about how to most effectively provide care. This would be similar to a family doctor consulting with a specialist.

If you are embarrassed to talk about your difficulties and concerns, Stephen Ministers have been trained to be non-judgmental and to accept you exactly as you are. In fact, they have probably felt much this same kind of embarrassment at one time or another. While it may be difficult at first, a Stephen Minister can help you learn to get over embarrassment so that you can go on from there.

Who is a Stephen Minister and how are they trained? 

Needs that can be met by a Stephen Minister include, but are not limited to:

  • Hospitalization
  • Declining health, disability, or terminal illness
  • Illness of a loved one
  • Death of a loved one
  • Divorce or separation from a spouse
  • Severe financial setback
  • Difficulties associated with aging
  • Transition to assisted living or nursing homes
  • Family or domestic problems
  • Isolation
  • Loneliness
  • Depression
  • Job crisis
  • Struggles in faith
  • Childbirth or adoption
  • Moving into or out of the community
  • Retirement
  • Intense stress or an overwhelming burden

Connect with Stephen Ministry

As the COVID-19 pandemic goes on, the needs for care continue to grow in congregations and communities everywhere. People are struggling with a variety of challenges. Many people are feeling very disconnected and are having a tough time right now.

Are you or someone you know experiencing Pandemic Fatigue?

  • Isolation and Loneliness
  • Anxiety Over Health
  • Grief due to Many Different Kinds of Losses
  • Tension from Juggling Work, Childcare, and Schooling
  • Financial Strain or Job Loss
  • Uncertainty about the Future
  • Other Unexpected Life Challenges

If so, you don’t have to face it alone. Our Stephen Ministers are ready to listen, care, encourage, and provide emotional and spiritual support. A Stephen Minister is available to meet with you privately—by phone, by video chat, or if safely possible, in-person – to offer care and support. It’s free and completely confidential. We now have a new, dedicated, confidential voicemail to ask questions regarding Stephen Ministry or to request a Stephen Minister. Call us at (925) 344-6831.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

Do you have a heart for those who are hurting? Are you a good listener? Do you have time in your life to meet regularly with someone and walk with them through a difficult time?

Stephen Ministry is a churchwide caring ministry that provides training to people in our congregation so they can provide distinctively Christian, one-to-one care to those who are experiencing all kinds of life needs and circumstances. Stephen Ministers provide an extension of pastoral care because they are able to reach more people with Christian care than pastors can by themselves.

We are always accepting applications to become a Stephen Minister. To inquire about the process to apply please contact us. 

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Prayer Request

You matter to God. The things that bring you joy and sadness matter to Him. God has promised to be there for us when we pray. As a ministry, we want to include you in our prayers. 

Below you will find a simple form that you can use to request prayer. We value your privacy and will only share information as you desire it shared. We have a prayer team that receives email updates with items to pray for. You can direct your prayer requests to our prayer team or just to our ministry staff depending on the nature of your request.

If you desire a pastoral follow-up related to your request please note that below.

Prayer Request

Who would you like to receive this prayer request? (Select all that apply)*

Would you like a follow-up on your prayer request from our pastor?