What is Pastoral Care?
Pastoral Care ministry is bringing Christ's compassion to people in emotional, physical and spiritual need as well as helping others to recognize their gifts and empowering them to use these gifts in the service of others. "So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing/caring for one another." <Col.3:12>
PROGRAMS FOR PASTORAL CARE TEAM
A card ministry, is to send cards to all members on their birthdays, anniversary, birth, death, and illness. Cards will be also sent for special occasions; graduations, receiving an award and following church related community events. Collecting data for significant birthdays (80+) and anniversaries (50+) funerals, and dedications.
Cards are hand written. Current members of the Card Ministry: Barbara Creighton, Rebecca Campbell, Cynthia Austin, Sandy Boswell, Clyde McKinney
Meals and Transportation Program
Most people appreciate a few meals at the time of an illness, birth and loss. This ministry will function as an internal team along with possible neighborhood teams when established. For long term needs of daily meals, we can use Meals on Wheels or other community agencies. There are transportation needs at times, such as getting members to church, medical appointments, therapies, and grocery shopping.
The Buddy System matches up elder members who live alone. Buddies call each other on alternate days to check-in and see how the other is doing. Members usually do best when they choose their own buddy, but the Team can help with matching if necessary. The team keeps track of emergency phone numbers of buddy pairs and serves as a backup if someone is concerned about their buddy.
Medical Equipment Loan Program
Members and local connections have donated to the church medical equipment such as walkers, canes, bedside commodes, guard rails for bed and tubs, shower chairs and crutches. The equipment will be stored in the container and loaned out to members when needed. A member of the PCM monitors this loan program, and is predicated on space available. Current Volunteer: Trevor Thomas
Visiting the ill and hospitalized
This program requires more time and training. Training needs to involve listening skills, behavior around the patient and procedures for visiting in a hospital setting. This program requires some wariness of one’s own limits such as being uncomfortable in hospitals, or with the seriously ill, or circumstances that cannot be remedied immediately.
The PCM will visit members in the hospital and follow up with calls and visits when they return home. If needed the Team sets up meals and follows up with family members who may need support. Current members: John & Sandy Boswell, Chuck Flitter, Barbara Creighton, Clyde McKinney
The PCM provides someone to care for ill family members so that the caretaker may be free to attend church, medical appointments, or take care of their own needs.
Visiting Members in Retirement Communities and Nursing Homes
Members of the PCM visit members of our congregation in retirement and nursing homes about once every one –two months and phone calls between visits. An effort will be made to provide transportation for them to attend church regularly and to return for special functions to stay in touch with friends. Current Members: Chuck Flitter, Barbara Creighton, John & Sandy Boswell, Clyde McKinney
Life Crises or Emotional Distress
It is recommended that this program function through the Eldership, PCM minister (Clyde McKinney), and (Mark Maggio) who has professional mental health training and experience. It is recommended and has been the practice of SCC staff to outsource counseling when needed or requested. The following are available: Pastoral Counseling Services of Maryland; Christian Counseling Associates; Renewing You Counseling; New Life; The Way Homes (Recovery – home living services), Crossroads Center (Addiction recovery) and Pathways of Annapolis (Addiction services).
Time of Death and Bereavement
Protocol to be followed when informed of a death of a member or relatives of a member:
During the initial phone call informing of a death, we assess the emotional distress of the person calling and the family support available, the degree of preparedness, and the circumstances of the death. We will quickly decide to either go in person or give information over the phone. In routine situations, where the person who passed is elderly or the death was expected, and the family member has support, information is given over the phone. If the caller is emotionally upset, unsupported, or unprepared, we go in person to provide information and support in decision making. We exchange phone numbers for further contact. We call the Meals and Transportation program if needed or requested, send sympathy cards and check in on them in 2-3 weeks. We attend the Memorial Services.
We continue to follow the bereaved family for 12-18 months, particularly if the remaining family is a single spouse. We call or visit the person who is now alone to re-enter the church family. Current Members: Clyde McKinney