The caregiving ministry at East Cobb UMC in Marietta grew on March 1, 2015, as seven new Stephen Ministers were commissioned.
These new lay caregivers join nine Stephen Ministers already commissioned and serving at the church.
“Our Stephen Ministry is truly an extension of our pastoral care ministry, and we are blessed that it not only serves those in own congregation, but also is open to anyone in the community who needs one-to-one care,” says senior pastor, Rev. Brian Germano,
Stephen Ministers offer care and support for people experiencing life difficulties such as the death of a loved one, job crisis, aging, separation or divorce, long-term illness, or for those needing the support of a Christian friend. They have received 50 hours of intensive training covering topics such as effective listening, confidentiality, the stress of hospitalization, feelings, and utilizing community resources. Stephen Ministry is especially attentive to the stresses and needs of those giving care to loved ones.
Stephen Ministry is a confidential ministry; those receiving care can be sure that their identity and what goes on in the caring relationship will remain private. In addition to the training, these lay Christian caregivers will continue to receive twice-monthly continuing education and supervision support sessions as they strive to offer the highest-quality Christian caregiving.
East Cobb UMC is one of more than 11,000 congregations throughout the United States and the world—representing more than 160 different Christian denominations—that have implemented this program of lay caregiving.
“Life has issues, pain, and adversity.This amazing group of Stephen Ministers work tirelessly to help hurting people invite the healing power of God into their circumstances," said pastor Jim Perry.
This article was first published in the East Cobber. See the original article at http://www.eastcobber.com/stephen-ministry-at-east-cobb-united-methodist-church-grows-as-new-caregivers-are-commissioned.