The Words of the Stephens Family

Shall We Inaugurate a Lay Community Minister System in Maryland?

Miilhan Stephens
April 25, 2013

Call for Community Input
Do We Need Volunteer Lay Ministers in Maryland?

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Please join Pastor Miilhan and the rest of us at a Mini Town Hall, Sunday May 5th, starting noon to 1 p.m. to discuss and plan some form of lay community ministry system in our MD community.

The pastor team, Church Council and local ministry leaders during the last year have agreed that a key unresolved need is for more personal, loving, caring attention for members in geographically-defined communities. We've gotten to the point of having about 190 families (900+ total people; 1st and 2nd Gen) spread out well over 2000 square miles. Naturally people face challenges and even the strongest among us occasionally need extra love and encouragement. We've concluded that one pastor cannot even begin to "pastor" and "nurture" such a group.

The thinking of many is that rather than one pastor relating to 928 people, we could have 15 lay community ministers relating to 15 local community clusters.

Your opinions ideas and advice are greatly valued here. What do you see as the "problem" and an answer? Please consider attending our mini Town Hall two Sundays from now, Sunday May 5th, right after church in the multi-purpose room. What do you think? How would you like to participate in this? Any advice?

Many of us are eminently trained by True Parents to lead and take care of people- former pastors, up-and coming 2nd G leaders, seminarians, state leaders, etc. Please consider this a tremendous opportunity to serve at one of several levels.

The need here is for sincere care, listening, service, love, encouragement and just being a model friend to both the happy and the not-yet-happy. And to create a stronger pipeline of connection to Pastor Miilhan and the Pastor Team here in Maryland. This particular initiative is NOT about trying to organize witnessing tables, Divine Principle lectures etc. -- important as those things are. This is pastoral.

Please start thinking: If folks in your town would call upon a volunteer to serve a year as a lay minister in your area, (maybe a year term) who would you choose? Time commitment might be 2-4 hours per week, and there would be a meeting once a month with the Pastor Team for sharing and training etc.

Hope to see you there, Sunday May 5th, at noon, multi-purpose room. We will serve juice and coffee. Again, your input is key: We'll listen.


Jim Boothby
Outreach Pastor
For the Maryland Pastor Team and Church Council 

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