What Is Stephen Ministry?

Stephen Ministry is a system for organizing, equipping, and supervising a team of congregation members to provide high-quality, one-to-one, Christ-centered care to people experiencing life difficulties in the congregation and the community.

Stephen Ministry involves three main groups:

  • Stephen Leaders are lay leaders, church staff, and pastors chosen by the leaders of the congregation and trained by faculty from Stephen Ministries to provide ongoing leadership for their congregation’s Stephen Ministry.
  • Stephen Ministers are members of our congregation trained to provide one-to-one, Christ-centered care. They have a compassionate heart for those who are hurting, and they’re equipped with caring ministry skills by our congregation’s Stephen Leaders. A Stephen Minister typically has one care receiver at a time and meets with that person once a week to listen, care, pray, encourage, and offer emotional and spiritual support.
  • Care receivers are individuals in the congregation or community who are going through a crisis or life difficulty and who are matched with a Stephen Minister.
The Spectmu of Care

Stephen Ministry fills a crucial caring need, providing an additional layer of crisis care and ongoing care through a team of well-trained, well-supervised, reliable laypeople.

In what type of situations do Stephen Ministers provide care?

Stephen Ministers provide care to individuals facing difficult times in life—grief, cancer, divorce, financial difficulties, hospitalization, chronic illness, job loss, disability, a spiritual crisis, or other life struggles

Do I need to be a member of Tree of Life to receive care?

No. Stephen Ministers often provide care for people in the broader community, enhancing and expanding outreach in a powerful way.

Stories from Care Receiver

“Care Receivers Share How Their Stephen Ministers Made a Difference”This piece shows the wide variety of situations for which Stephen Ministers can provide care, as well as thoughts from care receivers about their experiences.

“I Began to Feel God’s Love Again”A young woman describes how her caring relationship with her Stephen Minister allowed her to experience Jesus in a personal, tangible, life-transforming way.

“A Steady Reminder of God’s Presence”A woman tells how having a Stephen Minister during a family crisis gave her a spiritual anchor and the opportunity to focus on her own needs.

Articles That Demonstrate the Many Benefits of Stephen Ministry

“Earth Angels”In this newspaper article, several Stephen Leaders and Stephen Ministers describe their experiences serving in Stephen Ministry.

“Stephen Ministers Helping People Get Back on Track”This newspaper article tells how Stephen Ministers cared for the people of Joplin, Missouri, after a tornado devastated the city.

Stephen Ministry Referral Form

This is a self referral
This individual gave permission for referral