AR Facebook Fans Comment* on Homebound Members and Ministry
One practice that works for me is calling a stay-at-home member during the service and having a live conversation and prayer. Sometimes advance notice to the member is necessary.
AY service at the member’s home, read the Bible/sing hymns over the phone, send birthday cards, drop in just to listen. And do a “Shut-ins’ Day!” A day when church members (especially the young people) cook and clean for the homebound members, comb their hair, etc.
All of our Sabbath school and church services are audio and video recorded to share with them. Also, they are taken Communion regularly. Visitation is encouraged. Many are brought to church regularly by other church members.
People came from our church in Benton, Tennessee, to visit my family and father-in-law in Collegedale, who was a shut-in because of a terminal diagnosis. He passed away last week. I will never forget the kindness shown by my friends locally and church family during this difficult time. They brought food, helped with chores, sang hymns, and had Communion with Dad just a few days before he died. There is definitely a ministry for this, and when I am able I will pass on what I was given.
In the age of streaming/online services and cable TV, this ministry starts by including them in the service “hellos.” It never ends by forever including them in the church family, from their sofa, recliner, or bed.
Carrie Hope Wickham:
Many people have Facebook pages too, so it is easier to write them a little “I missed you” note. Most of my time is filled with children’s ministry things in our church, so I mail out care packages to those who don’t come very often to allow them to be able to study with their children what we are covering in the lower division Sabbath school. I try to do this once a quarter.
I do prayer quilts for the members, or prayer squares. They contain a Bible verse, and they give comfort to a lot of people who are stuck in bed. Also do Scripture cards as well.
Probably calling people who are unable to go out “shut-ins” is one of my greatest “hates” (except Christians are not meant to hate). Let’s use better nomenclature. These people “Stay at Home.” It is a home ministry.
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