By Rev. Glenn DeMaster, Pastor of Care Ministry
“There’s my pastor!” These words would greet me when I walked into a home converted to a care facility for five to six people. Bunny’s greeting was always such a blessing and got the attention of everyone in the room.
Bunny was in her nineties when she required 24-hour care. Even though she was not physically able to do much for herself, it was a joy to spend time with Bunny. I often stopped by to encourage and bless her, and I was the one who got blessed!
Even with her limitations, Bunny still had a zest for life. I often reminded her that she was “firecracker baby,” since she was born on the Fourth of July. Bunny had such a positive spirit and steadfast faith in Jesus. On my visits, she loved to hear about her friends and what was happening at her church, Shepherd’s Grove. Bunny felt very connected to her church, which televises the Hour of Power with Bobby Schuller on weekends.
Bunny lived to be 100 years old. In those final years, when her mind began to get cloudy and a stroke robbed her of her ability to speak clearly, just being with Bunny brightened her life. As Pastor Jim Kok always reminds us, “90% of caring is just showing up.” Sharing with Bunny just how special she was and how much God loved her seemed to give her a quiet spirit and a sense of peace. Reading scripture and praying for Bunny was always a part of our time together. We have many Bunnies who were once a very active part of our church and are now confined to a care facility. I miss my dear friend, Bunny.
Caring for each member of Shepherd’s Grove is a high priority. We believe that each person has dignity and is loved by God. People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care!
Our care ministry is carried out in a number of ways at Shepherd’s Grove.
- Ministering Elders: These are men and women who have been trained and have a passion for caring for others. They have up to ten households in their “flock.” They stay in regular contact with their flock.
- Minister of the Day (MOD): These are trained lay pastors who staff our Care Office from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm from Monday to Friday. They take calls from people who need prayer, they call people who are sick or have had surgery, and they meet with people who walk in off the street and need help.
- Small Groups and Fellowship Classes: These are people who are in community together and care for one another.
- Urgent Care: When a person is suffering from an illness, is having surgery, has had an accident, or has lost a loved one, an urgent care memo is generated. On the memo is the name of their Ministering Elder and one of the pastoral staff who will make a contact with the person or family.
Care and kindness are vital to the health of our church community. Jesus commands us to love one another. When we are giving and caring for others, we receive such a blessing. God loves you, and so do we, at Shepherd’s Grove.
P.S. If you are ever in the need of prayer, call our Care Ministry at 714-971-4100.