What are the characteristics of a good caregiver? Stephen Ministers brainstormed this question at a recent Group Supervision meeting and came up with a long list, including the following: empathy, patience, compassion, caring, flexibility, dedication, commitment, confidentiality, spirituality, good listener, communication skills, plus two concrete items–time and transportation. Many members of FUMC do possess these characteristics and could become excellent Stephen Ministers–but they need to participate in the Stephen Ministry training program.
The above characteristics fit well with the four points in the Caregiver’s Compass–compassionate, full of faith, skilled, and trustworthy. The first lesson in the 50-hour Stephen Ministry training program asks people in small groups to answer these questions: What does it mean for a Stephen Minister to be compassionate? What does it mean for a Stephen Minister to be full of faith? What does it mean for a Stephen Minister to be skilled? What does it mean for a Stephen Minister to be trustworthy? How do Stephen Ministers keep Jesus at the center of their caring relationships?
To learn more about Stephen Ministry, you are invited to talk to a Stephen Minister who will be at the front of the sanctuary at the close of each Sunday morning worship service throughout the Advent season.