Grace Lutheran Church has been providing Christian care through Stephen Ministries since 1993. Stephen Ministry is grounded in Jesus’ command to love one another. Through one-on-one caring relationships and other services, those who are hurting receive Christian love and encouragement at times when they may find it difficult to cope with life’s challenges.
Who Is a Stephen Minister? A Stephen Minister is a member of our congregation who has been trained to provide distinctively Christian care. A Stephen Minister is not a counselor or therapist or someone who is there to solve your problems. Stephen Ministers are there to be with you--to be available regularly to listen and to care, to encourage, to pray, and to walk alongside you during difficult times. Receiving support from a Stephen Minister is confidential, free, and very helpful.
Stephen Ministers receive 50 hours of initial training and then participate in regular monthly supervision and training. Stephen Ministry leaders, as well as Grace’s pastors, are available to provide Stephen Ministers with additional guidance as needed.
Times When You Might Need a Stephen Minister • When life is more than you can handle on your own • When your health, attitude, or relationships are suffering • When you are struggling to make a major adjustment to a change in life--a new job, a change in marital status, a serious illness, the loss of a loved one, or a recent move • When you are lonely, in a spiritual crisis, or looking for a caring Christian friend
Other Stephen Ministry Services • Every Sunday a Stephen Minister is available in the Grace atrium after the 8:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. worship services to talk and pray with those needing support and encouragement • Care Notes--booklets on a variety of topics like loneliness and grief--are available on the table in the narthex. Parishioners are encouraged to take them for their own use and to share them with others. • Four short books in the Journeying through Grief series are provided over the course of a year to people who have experienced a significant loss.
Requesting a Stephen Minister If you would like to request a Stephen Minister, please contact or .
To Become a Stephen Minister Training classes for new Stephen Ministers are held in alternate years. The next class begins early in 2009. To learn more, please speak with one of the pastors or .
About Stephen Ministries Since 1975, St. Louis-based Stephen Ministries has been helping congregations equip God’s people for spiritual growth and Christ-centered practical ministry in the world. Stephen Ministries was founded by the Reverend Kenneth C. Haugk, Ph.D., a pastor and clinical psychologist, after he saw that individuals in his congregation and community needed care that far exceeded what he alone could provide. Since then, Stephen Ministry programs have been implemented in more than 9,000 congregations, representing more than 100 Christian denominations. More than 450,000 laypersons have been trained as Stephen Ministers, and they in turn have ministered to nearly a million care receivers.
Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. (Galatians 6:2)