Grace Church became a Stephen Ministry enrolled congregation in January, 2016. We are excited to be laying the groundwork for offering a dynamic lay caring ministry to persons within our church and surrounding community in the near future! Check back to this link often for updates as we prepare for our first Stephen Ministry local church training class!
What is Stephen Ministry?
Stephen Ministry is a one-to-one lay caring ministry that takes place in congregations that use the Stephen Series system developed by the Rev Dr. Kenneth Haugk in 1975. Stephen Ministry congregations equip and empower lay caregivers—called Stephen Ministers—to provide high-quality, confidential, Christ-centered care to people who are hurting. A Stephen Minister (also known as a “care-giver”) and one who is going through a crisis or struggle in life (a “care-receiver”) typically meet together for about one hour a week for as long as it takes to work through the concerns of the care-receiver.
To learn much more about Stephen Ministries, click here. In addition, an excellent video clip describing this ministry is a PBS Special on Religion and Ethics highlighting Stephen Ministry, click here to watch.
Meet Our Stephen Leaders
Susan Amole is originally from Toronto, Canada. She was raised by parents who were Christians, and she has known the Lord personally since she was a little girl; church involvement and ministry has always been part of her life in God. Sue moved to Florida in her early 20’s, where she married and had 3 daughters who are now adults, with lives and families of their own. Now married to Jack Amole, she has lived in St Augustine since June 2014, at which time she and Jack began attending Grace UMC. Professionally, Sue is a nurse at UF Health where she cares for premature and sick infants in the NICU. Sue is excited about Stephen Ministry at Grace, and feels privileged to serve on the team. She sees it as a way of bringing God’s love, healing and comfort to those going through difficult times. Stephen Ministry will enhance our care to our own members and surrounding community.
Roger Carlson is a recently retired United Methodist minister who served churches in Maryland for thirty-seven years. Roger, as a trained Stephen Leader, helped to bring Stephen Ministry to the congregation he served as pastor in 1994, and has since been supportive of Stephen Ministry programs in subsequent pastorates. He’s experienced first-hand how Stephen Ministry supports busy pastors in reaching out to those persons experiencing a crisis or challenging place in life, as well as providing a wonderful outlet for lay persons with a heart for caring ministry to put their passion to work in the parish. Roger is married to Cyndy, and they together have three grown children – Kent, a Maryland resident, and twins Jessamyn and Benjamin of St. Augustine. The Carlson family has been attending Grace UMC since April, 2014.
Contact Sue @ 904-553-8536 or by clicking here for email.
Contact Roger @ 240-483-7183 or by clicking here for email.