Stephen Ministry

Stephen Ministers are congregation members trained by their Stephen Leaders to offer care to people

Stephen Ministries trains congregations to equip their members to do quality, practical Christian ministries in care giving, small groups and spiritual growth. Our first class of Stephen Ministers included seven women and one man who were commissioned on May 3rd, 2015. Besides assisting their care receiver, they are continuing to learn and assist each other every other week.


Stephen Ministers are congregation members trained by their Stephen Leaders to offer care to people who are hurting. They provide high-quality, one-to-one, Christ-centered care to people in the congregation and the community experiencing life difficulties. A Stephen Minister typically has one care receiver at a time and meets with that person once a week for about an hour. Care receivers are individuals in the congregation or community who are going through a crisis or life difficulty. Potential care receivers first meet with a pastor or Stephen Leader, who assesses their needs for care and matches them with a Stephen Minister. The caring relationship lasts for as long as the need persists.



Who Is A Stephen Minister?

  • A Christian who walks beside a person who is hurting
  • A congregation member with gifts for care giving
  • A layperson carefully selected, who has received 50 hours of training in providing emotional and spiritual care
  • A caring, Christian friend who listens, cares, makes no judgements, prays, supports, and encourages.
  • Someone who will meet faithfully with his or her care receiver, for about one hour each week, for as long as there is need.
  • A person who adheres to very clear guidelines on confidentiality.


Why Is This Ministry Needed?

Pastors will always be available during times of crisis, but there are more needs for ongoing, personalized care than pastors can meet by themselves. Stephen Ministry is a biblical solution for equipping those specially gifted in our congregation for care-giving. Lay people are trained to support and extend the care that pastors continue to provide. Stephen Ministers reach out to those hurting, both within our church family and throughout the community.


THE BLESSINGS OF STEPHEN MINISTRY

Stephen Ministry multiplies blessings throughout the church and community.


  • Congregations carry out Christ’s commandment to “Love one another as I have loved you” (John 15:12 RSV) in a powerful and practical way.


  • Pastors have a team of gifted, trained, and committed lay caregivers ready to minister to hurting people. 


  • Laypeople nurture and use their gifts in meaningful ministry, growing spiritually as they serve others.


  • People who are hurting have a caring Christian presence to provide emotional and spiritual support.



Can A Stephen Minister Help You?


Could you benefit from confidential, one-to-one care and support of a Stephen Minister? If you or someone you care about is interested, please contact us by calling a pastor or Stephen Leader.


For more information, please email;

Pastor Kellie at kwhitlock@mi.rr.com OR Call, text, or email Lorraine Paffenroth at 734-455-8213 | stephenministry@rosedalegardens.org


When Is It Not Appropriate to Use A Stephen Minister?

  • People coping with emotional and physical burdens may be in need of professional care.
  • Stephen ministers are not therapists. Care receivers under the care of a mental health professional must receive permission of that professional in order to be assigned a Stephen Minister.
  • Stephen Ministers do not run errands or provide meals. They are not problem solvers, but focus on a ministry of listening, help, and giving support.
  • Stephen Ministers are not service providers. They are care givers, not cure givers.
The Power of Stephen Ministry

Meet our Stephen Ministry Team

You can directly email Lorraine at stephenministry@rosedalegardens.org

How Do You Become A Stephen Minister?


A Stephen Leader or staff member can provide you with the information you need to get started. The process includes an application, a brief interview, and 50 hours of interactive training. Contact Pastor Kellie at kwhitlock@mi.rr.com OR Call, text, or email Lorraine Paffenroth at 734-455-8213 | stephenministry@rosedalegardens.org for more information.