Stephen Ministry is a one-to-one lay caring ministry, providing high-quality, confidential, Christ-centered care to people who are hurting.
A crisis might be a time of loneliness, unemployment, depression, illness, stress, a move, birth of a child, grief, divorce, etc., which lasts briefly or is prolonged. Stephen Ministry is confidential.
Stephen Ministers receive 50 hours of intensive training in many helping skills and are involved in on-going supervision and continuing education.
A Stephen Minister meets weekly with a care receiver for as long as needed.
Stephen Ministry Misconception
Stephen Ministry is Not Counseling, It’s Caring
What does Stephen Ministry mean to a hurting person? See the real-time thoughts from a recipient of Stephen Ministry about their experience. No names are used to uphold confidentiality.
1. What would you say to someone who might be going through a difficult time or is considering asking for a Stephen Minister?
My Stephen Minister provided me with many valuable gifts in life that I had never known. Going through a difficult time can be lonely and scary, which only makes it more difficult. Sharing difficulties with a person that WANTS to come along side you and has the heart and training to help makes all the difference. I did not know how to cope, how to help myself, or how to get myself away my difficulties. Having another person truly care made a difference.
2. How did you feel when you first met? How did your feelings change as you began to trust your Stephen Minister?
I first met with my Stephen Minister I felt I was alone and was afraid of being judged. As we continued to get together I found just the opposite to be true. Because of this I began to share my burdens and was able to see that I could release them.
3. Did Stephen Ministry meet your expectations? How?
My Stephen Minister has exceeded my expectations. I expected a person to talk with, one that would listen to me and give me their opinion. I also expected a religious “spin” because it was a Ministry through church. What I discovered is a person that truly cares about me and my life. I received alternate ways of seeing things that may never have occurred to me and let me decide what “fits” for me. My Stephen Minister also showed me that Jesus is there, and I am able to communicate with Him on my own…making my own relationship.
If you would like more information about Stephen Ministry at Trinity – please contact Jan Wilson at 714-771-0951
Stephen Ministry Frequently Asked Questions:
Who are Stephen Ministers? They are congregation members trained by Stephen Leaders to offer high-quality, one-to-one Christian care to people going through difficult times. A Stephen Minister usually provides care to one person at a time, meeting with that person once a week for about an hour. Twice a month, Stephen Ministers gather with their Stephen Leaders for supervision and continuing education.
What is a “Care Receiver”? They are people who may be Trinity members, regular attenders or others in the community who receive care from a Stephen Minister. These are people struggling through a challenging time in life—experiencing grief, divorce, job loss, chronic or terminal illness, family relationship difficulty, loneliness or experiencing other life’s losses/disappointments.
Why the name Stephen? In the book of Acts, chapter 6, Stephen was chosen to provide caring ministry to those in need. Since the time of the Apostles, care ministry has been considered a hallmark of the Christian faith community.
What does the Stephen Ministry Logo mean? The Stephen Ministry logo tells a story—the story of a care receiver’s journey from brokenness toward wholeness through the cross of Jesus. It is a journey made possible by “Christ caring for people through people,” which is the Stephen Ministry motto.
Some important guidelines for this caring relationship protect both the care receiver and the Stephen Minister:
- The relationship between a care receiver and a Stephen Minister is confidential.
- Men are matched with men; women with women.
- When a care receiver’s needs exceed what a Stephen Minister can provide, the Stephen Ministry team makes a referral to an appropriate mental health professional or other community resource.
If you would like to know more about Stephen Ministry – contact Jan Wilson, Stephen Ministry Leader at email@example.com, or any Stephen Leader in our congregation, or check out the website: www.stephenministries.org
A Stephen Minister is …
- A child of God who walks beside a person who is hurting
- A congregation member with gifts for care giving, 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 and encourages
- Someone who will “be there” for his or her care receiver for as long as there is a need
Continuing Education is required of all trained Stephen Ministers. Many of the topics are relevant to others as well and the congregation is invited to attend. Sessions are held on Wednesdays, twice each month, 7:00 – 8:00 p.m.
For further information about Continuing Education, contact Terry Bell at 714-875-3415 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you need a Stephen Minister?
To confidentially request a Stephen Minister, contact one of the Referrals Coordinators:
Women’s Referral Coordinator – Jan Wilson, 714-771-0951 – email@example.com
Men’s Referral Coordinator – Lem Bonilla, 714-803-1100 – firstname.lastname@example.org
“All I can say is thank you. I was so overwhelmed and I didn’t know where to begin. My Stephen Minister helped me sort through my challenges and regain my faith in God.”