About Stephen Ministry
Stephen Ministry congregations equip and empower lay caregivers - called Stephen Ministers - to provide high-quality, confidential, Christ-centered care to people who are hurting.
Qualities Of A Stephen Minister
Core Qualities of a Stephen Minister
- The person is a Christian.
- The person has the ability to keep confidences.
- The person is able to relate to others non-judgmentally.
- The person is committed to giving the time necessary for training and service.
- The person is willing and able to participate faithfully in supervision.
Desirable Qualities of a Stephen Minister
- Shows humility.
- Is aware of personal boundaries and able to say no when necessary
- Is tolerant, non-judgmental, accepting, forgiving
- Shows a positive regard for people
- Desires to grow and is eager to learn
- Is reliable, dependable, trustworthy
- Makes decisions and follows through with tasks and responsibilities
- Shows emotional stability
- Is willing to try new behaviours, experiment with different approaches, explore possibilities
- Possesses genuine self-esteem and is content to serve quietly and without fanfare
- Is teachable, trainable, accepting of supervision
- Shows an ability to relate to and work with diverse types of people
- Is comfortable meeting people and helping them feel comfortable
- Is welcoming and hospitable
- Is open to differences of opinion
- Is clear, direct, and to the point in communicating with others
- Expresses feelings in an honest and caring way
- Has the capacity to be vulnerable, to laugh and cry with people
- Cares for others in an assertive but not aggressive way
- Deals appropriately with confidential information
- Is accepting of self and others because God has graciously accepted him or her
- Understands faith as a relationship with God and a way of life
- Is not currently experiencing a major spiritual crisis
- Has a growing relationship with God indicated by regular worship, Bible use and personal prayer
- Has a heart and vision for servant ministry
- Has an authentic desire to serve Christ and the church
- Has the ability to articulate his or her faith in a natural and comfortable way
- Shows a willingness to work hard and has an attitude that says, “I’m willing to do whatever it takes”
- Views Stephen Ministry as a significant aspect of the congregation’s total mission and ministry
- Is greatly excited about and keenly interested in Stephen ministry
- Grasps the commitment level that is required for this ministry
- Has the willingness (and capacity) to commit significant time and energy to learning and practicing the role of Stephen Minister
- Has a deep desire to serve others through Stephen Ministry
- Shows a willingness to take responsibility for his or her own actions.
Hear what one member of West Vancouver United Church says about her experience of being a Stephen Minister...
Serving as a Stephen Minister at WVUC
There is training, which will include:
- two (2) retreats [Friday evening & Saturday], and
- nine (9) evening classes (7-9pm), spread over non-holiday Mondays in September, October, November and early December.
As a Stephen Minister you will visit about once a week (for about one hour) with the person you are caring for. You will also attend up to two (2) meetings per month for supervision and continuing education.
It is an important part of the application process to talk with a Stephen Leader as part of discerning your fit with Stephen Ministry.
The next step is to fill out an application that can be given to you by a Stephen Leader.
After you submit your application you will meet with the Stephen Leader team. This gives you an opportunity to ask more questions and for Stephen Leaders to learn more about you as they, too, discern your fit with Stephen Ministry.
Gwen Carpenter, Rev. Philip Newman, Ally Murray and Kim Logan (the same order as they appear in image below, left to right):