Jesus expects us to care for all of his children, and especially “the least of these.”
At St. Andrew’s, parishioners support those in need through a variety of services. We pray for hearts to love and hands to serve. Our Pastoral Care Ministry is grounded in Jesus’ command to love one another.
Stephen Ministry is a one-to-one caring Christian-based ministry which enables our congregation to minister to those who are most in need of the gentle support of Christ’s unwavering love. Stephen Ministry strengthens our spiritual vitality and allows us to reach out to our parish community.
This ministry consists of three teams of people, Stephen Leaders, Stephen Ministers, and Care Receivers.
*Stephen Leaders establish and direct the Stephen Ministry in a congregation by building awareness, recruiting, and training Stephen Ministers, matching care receivers with Stephen Ministers, and providing Stephen Ministers with ongoing supervision and continuing education.
*Stephen Ministers are congregation members who participate in a 50-hour training by Stephen Leaders to provide high-quality one-to-one care to people going through tough times.
*Care Receivers are those people who receive care from a Stephen Minister. These are people struggling through a difficult time in their lives. The relationship between a Stephen Minister and Care Receiver is confidential. Men are matched with men, and women with women.
Establishing St. Andrew’s identity as a Stephen Ministry church requires each of us to support this ministry in whatever capacity God calls us.
If you are experiencing challenges in your life – a time when you could benefit from the support of a trained caring Christian friend – please contact either Stephen’s Leader Karen Brenner, 219-588-4497.
The Bible teaches that, above all, churches should be houses of prayer. We take that mandate very seriously. During weekend services, people fill out “Prayer Request Cards,” and then on Monday mornings at 9:30 a.m., a group of trained and dedicated people gather in our Sanctuary to pray on behalf of others. We invite you to share your requests with us so that we may pray for you. Either complete a “Prayer Request Card” or visit our web prayer page and let us know how we can support you. If you would like to join in this ministry, come in on Monday mornings and pray with us!
Prayer Shawl Ministry
In the Bible, we are reminded that handkerchiefs or aprons were brought from the body of St. Paul and given to the sick, and “diseases left them.” On the 2nd Thursday of the month at 10:30am, parishioners come together at church to knit prayer shawls that are blessed and given to the sick or those who could use an extra “hug.” Please grab your knitting needles or crochet hooks and yarn and join this ministry. If you know someone who would be blessed with the gift of a hand-crafted prayer shawl, please contact the church office.
Lay Eucharistic Visitors
Eucharistic Visitors are trained and licensed by the Church to take Communion from the altar on Sunday to the sick, injured, and shut-in members of the parish. Contact the church office if you would like a visit.
Parish members offer to pick up those who don’t drive and bring them to church, the doctor or other essential destinations. Contact the church office if you need a ride or if you’re willing to provide this transportation.
Share the Care
This sub-committee of the Pastoral Care team oversees the “Meal Train,” which is an online structured way to coordinate and provide meals. When a family is celebrating the birth of a baby, recovering from surgery or an illness, has had a death in the family, or is experiencing hardship, being able to help with meals is a critical way to lend support. These meals will be prepared and delivered by our wonderful parish family cooks, and will bring comfort and peace of mind to the person/family during their challenging time. If you would be willing to provide a meal when a life event such as those mentioned above occur, please contact Pat Thurman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Members of this ministry team visit parishioners who are hospitalized. They offer prayers, if desired, and any assistance they can provide. Contact the church office if you need someone to visit you or a loved one, or if you would like to be a member of this amazing ministry team.
Nursing Home and Valparaiso Hospice Center Visitation
Many of our parishioners volunteer at care facilities around the area. If you would like one of our trained volunteers to visit you, please contact the church office.