Holladay United Church has participated in the Stephen Ministry for 15 years, and our wonderful Stephen Leaders led another class through the training in early 2017, confirming six new Stephen Ministers in May. Stephen Ministry is a very unique kind of Christian care-giving. It is a program that calls, trains, supervises and supports lay people to a ministry of walking along side another person as that individual goes through a difficult life experience. A Stephen Minister will usually meet one-on-one with their care receiver about once a week for approximately one hour. The meetings are not about advice-giving –– they are about listening to, being present with and supporting the care-receiver. A Stephen Ministry caring relationship is completely confidential. Our training focuses on Stephen Ministers being compassionate, skilled, trustworthy and able to rely on God as the cure-give while we are the care-givers.
History of Stephen Ministry at HUCC
Fifteen years ago Rev. Michael Jackson, our pastor, was contacted by a Stephen Leader from Community of Grace Presbyterian church and invited to send persons to be trained as Stephen Ministers. The group who participated was Sherry Stuart, Marty Sammond and Ann Williams. For two years we functioned as part of the COG ministry program.
In 2000 Jan Foutz and Ann Williams traveled to Orlando, Florida to become Stephen Leaders. It was at the time that HUCC became a Stephen church and began training persons within the congregation to become Stephen Ministers. We have maintained our relationship with COG and share leadership and facilities for meetings and supervision.