“Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
The Associate for Caring Ministries is a staff position with the express focus of attending to anyone who has need of a listening ear, offering support for parishioners during times of pastoral need through direct services, creation structures of support, and participation in program development.
Friendly Faces, currently at ten committee members, makes personal visits to St. Stephen’s parishioners who are home-bound, recovering, or in need of a quiet visit for any other reason. Members of this committee also launched the parallel Friendly Foods.
The Friendly Food committee provides meals to parishioners with similar recovery or grief needs.
The Parish Counselor is available to any parishioner to provide professional, confidential, private meetings at no cost. She is able to assess needs, counsel short term, and/or refer parishioners to appropriate resources for on-going help if needed. The needs may be for counseling services or for more tangible help such as food stamps, fuel services and the like.
Lay Eucharistic Visitors are Episcopal lay people trained to take communion from the Sunday service to homebound parishioners. This extension of the fellowship of Holy Communion reminds us that “We who are many are one body because we all share one bread and one cup.”