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The Concise Guide for Congregational Care: Words to Use in Every Setting

The Concise Guide for Congregational Care: Words to Use in Every Setting

by Melissa Collier Gepford
The Concise Guide for Congregational Care: Words to Use in Every Setting

The Concise Guide for Congregational Care: Words to Use in Every Setting

by Melissa Collier Gepford

eBookThe Concise Guide for Congregational Care - eBook [ePub] (The Concise Guide for Congregational Care - eBook [ePub])

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Pastors and congregational care ministers of all kinds must offer the right words and presence in any place, at a moment’s notice: Words of scripture offering comfort, encouragement, and wisdom. Words of truth providing accurate information. Words of prayer offering connection with God. And a calm, capable, attentive presence. The Concise Guide for Congregational Care is the tool for the task.

This easy-to-use book provides words of scripture and prayer, along with important information to share with people in hospitals, care centers, and homes. The full texts of scripture, poetry, and prayers are included, so there’s no more flipping back and forth in your Bible or other books. The small size makes the book easy to carry in your bag or pocket, and appropriate to use in the most intimate settings and sacred moments.
Part 1 offers quick reminders of the foundations for care, including key points on theology, boundaries, procedures, and the use of technology.

Part 2 provides scriptures, prayers, and other relevant words for times of crisis and events or situations during which people need care. It is organized by situation, including addiction, anxiety, cancer, COVID-19, death, depression, divorce, infertility, sexual assault, and suicide.

Part 3 equips you to be a meaningful spiritual guide in important moments beyond crisis care. These include adoption, blessing of a home, graduation, retirement, and many other transitions, milestones, and seasons of life. This section includes words of scripture and prayer for each situation, plus instructions for conducting a simple service of anointment.

Melissa Gepford is an ordained deacon in The United Methodist Church and serves as the Intergenerational Discipleship Coordinator for the Great Plains Conference, UMC. She launched Caring Congregation Ministries at churches in Kansas and Nebraska, and is an organizational consultant for The Caring Congregation, which strives to create excellence in church care ministry across the United States.

Contributors Laura Berg and Joy Dister-Dominguez provided original prayer texts and helped to shape the scripture selections for this book. Laura Berg is an ordained deacon in full connection in the Florida Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. She has served as a minister of congregational care, hospice chaplain, and chaplain for the fire & police departments of New Smyrna Beach, FL. She co-established a congregational care ministry in her church and has worked with leaders and laity in churches across the U.S. to develop care ministries for their communities. Joy Dister-Dominguez serves as associate pastor at Arlington Heights United Methodist Church in Ft. Worth, TX, where she oversees congregational care and discipleship and preaches regularly. Joy is an elder in full connection in the United Methodist Church. She is an ICF trained coach and uses those skills to guide leaders and congregations in creating strong, sustainable ministries of care.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781791024116
Publisher: Abingdon Press
Publication date: 04/05/2022
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: eBook
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Rev. Melissa Collier Gepford is the Intergenerational Discipleship Coordinator of the Great Plains Conference, in which she helps congregations establish healthy discipleship systems. She grew up in East Texas and graduated from Perkins School of Theology, and as an ordained deacon, she connects church people to the world. Melissa is a writer, speaker, and resource curator. She enjoys drinking good coffee, working out, and testing her semi-green thumb. Melissa and her husband Bill enjoy dancing when they can and love playing with their son, Finnegan.

Table of Contents

Foreword Karen Lampe vii

Introduction ix

Part 1 Foundations for Care 1

Theology of Care 1

Boundaries for Care 4

Examples of Helpful Questions 10

Procedures and Practices 12

Part 2 Prayers, Scriptures, and Other Tools 21

Crisis and Trauma 21

Addiction 22

Anger 26

Anxiety 28

Cancer/Chronic Illness 33

Depression 36

Mental Illness 40

Rape/Sexual Assault 47

Suicide 51

Communal Trauma 59

Global Events 60

Local Events 62

Natural Disaster 64

Lament of Injustice 66

Elections 68

Division 70

COVID-19 71

Grief and Loss 79

Death 79

General Lament 88

Loss of a Loved One 89

Divorce 92

Breakup 95

Loss of How Things Used to Be 97

When Things Aren't What You Thought They'd Be 98

Letting Go 100

Infertility, Miscarriage, and Stillbirth 104

Part 3 Marking the Moments 111

Anointing Service 112

Seasons of Life and Milestone Blessings 114

Adoption/Fostering 114

Aging Related Changes 116

Baptism/Child Dedication 117

Empty Nester 118

Becoming a Grandparent 120

Birthdays 121

Blessing of the Backpacks 122

Blessing of a Home 123

Blessing of the Pets 125

Caregiving 126

Celebrating Growth 128

Commemorating Change 130

Confirmation 131

First Bible 132

Graduation 133

New Name/Gender Transition 134

Raising Children 135

Recovery Anniversary 136

Remission/Successful Medical Intervention 137

Retirement 139

Transition to Adolescence 140

Wedding Anniversary/Vow Renewal/Ring Exchange 142

Appendix: The Caring Congregation Resources 144

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