Stephen Ministry

A Friend Who Cares

When we honestly ask ourselves which persons in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing, and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.

Henri J.M. Nouwen, in
Out of Solitude

What are Stephen Ministers?

Stephen Ministers are laypeople who receive Christian care-giving training in their congregation and then provide one-to-one Christ-centered care to hurting people. Each Stephen Minister typically has one care receiver at a time and meets with that person once a week. If you need a Stephen Minister, or you know someone who could use a Stephen Minister, contact Jeff McClain, our Director of Congregation Care.

Who is Stephen?

Stephen was one of the first laypeople commissioned by the Apostles to provide caring ministry (Acts 6: 1-7). Stephen Series describes the steps a congregation follows to implement the caring ministry system, which is commonly called Stephen Ministry.

The Stephen Ministry Symbol

Stephen Ministry LogoThe symbol for Stephen Ministry is a cross and a circle with a broken person and a whole person. The broken person behind the cross symbolizes the brokenness in our lives due to our sin and imperfections. The whole person in the front of the cross symbolizes the wholeness we can only receive through the cross of Jesus. The circle symbolizes both the wholeness we receive through Christ and God’s unending love for us.

What are Stephen Leaders?

Stephen Leaders are pastors and lay leaders who direct Stephen Ministry in their congregation. They attend a one-week Leaders’ Training Course (LTC) where they learn how to effectively lead their congregation’s Stephen Ministry. At Boone United Methodist Church, our Stephen Leaders are Rev. Jeff McClain, our Director of Congregational Care, Cindy Shelton, Cheryl Keller, and John Cook.