A ministry of caring...Our congregation has a group of people skilled in caring for those facing challenges in their lives. These people, Stephen Ministers, have undergone extensive training to develop and nurture their caring skills and are now caring for people who are experiencing many different kinds of crises and stress in their lives.
Who might receive care from a Stephen Minister? Care receivers may be hospitalized, grieving the death of a loved one, separated or divorcing, homebound, unemployed, adjusting to the birth of a child, or otherwise experiencing difficulties.
We all have times when we are lonely, grieving, hurt, or in need of care. In his second letter to the Corinthians, Paul tells us that such troubles can bring spiritual growth to the sufferer. But when we who are in Christ suffer, we also find comfort through Christ, and one of the ways we find this comfort is through others who have found Christ's care and comfort in their sufferings (2 Cor. 1:4-6). Our Stephen Ministers offer this Christ-like care to those in need.
Think about your life and the lives of the people around you. Are you experiencing a time of crisis or challenge? Do you know someone who is suffering from grief or loneliness? Is one of your friends struggling to find meaning in life after he or she has retired or after all the children have gone? Could you, or someone you know, benefit from the care of a Stephen Minister?
If you have questions about the work of the Stephen Ministers at Holy Cross, feel free to call the church at 483-4218. Please consider whether you know of someone who needs the care of one of our Stephen Ministers. And we ask you to remember them and their ministries in your thoughts and prayers.
If you are interested in learning about people whose lives are transformed by providing or receiving care through Stephen Ministry, check out the national organization's website at www.stephenministries.org.
WHAT KIND OF PEOPLE
WOULD RECEIVE THE CARE OF A STEPHEN MINISTER?
A man like Adam... who was cut off from all that gave meaning to life and needed someone to remind him of God's promise.
A woman like Sarah... who faced a major challenge in life at an advanced age and needed someone to listen to both her joy and apprehension.
A man like Abraham... who had to leave everything he knew and loved behind him and needed someone to journey with him to a new life.
A woman like Hagar... who was abandoned along with her child and needed someone to offer her hope and remind her of God's presence.
A man like Noah... who witnessed the destruction of everything around him and needed someone to wait with him for a new day.
A woman like Hannah... who struggled with her inability to bear a child and needed someone with whom to share her sadness and pain.
For more information about Stephen Ministers, contact Sandy Regel through the church office, 483-4218.