Stephen Minstry grows at Tanner Street Church of God

Monday, June 17, 2019
Members of Stephen Ministry pray over new lay caregiver, Sherrie Froderman, June 1 at Tanner Street Church of God in Sikeston.
Bob Greenlee/Standard Democrat

SIKESTON — The Christian caregiving ministry at Tanner Street Church of God in Sikeston has grown recently. Two new Stephen Ministers were commissioned on June 1.

These new lay caregivers, Pam Blackman and Sherrie Froderman, join the Stephen Ministers already commissioned and serving at Tanner Street Church of God.

“We are pleased to be able to expand our caring ministry. These additional trained laypeople will be a big help to our congregation and community,” said Tanner Street senior pastor John Neeley.

Stephen Ministers offer care and support for people experiencing life difficulties such as the death of a loved one, job crisis, aging, separation or divorce, long-term illness or for those needing the support of a Christian friend. They have received 50 hours of intensive training covering topics such s effective listening, confidentiality, the stress of hospitalization, feelings and utilizing community resources.

Stephen Ministry is a confidential ministry; those receiving can be sure that their identity and what goes on in the caring relationship will remain private. In addition to the training, these lay Christian caregivers will continue to receive twice-monthly continuing education and supervision support sessions as they strive to offer the highest-quality Christian caregiving.

Tanner Street Church of God is one of many congregations throughout the United States, Canada and several foreign countries, representing dozens of different denominations that have implemented this program of lay Christian caregiving. The Steven Series was developed by Stephen Ministries in St. Louis. Tanner Street Church has been part of the Stephen Series since 2012, and laypeople are trained in a weeklong Leader’s Training Course to return to their local congregations o recruit and train other laypeople in the skills of Christian caregiving.

“The people at Tanner Street Church of God are excited to offer the care and love our Stephen Ministers to our congregation and community,” Neeley said.

Pam Blackman, one of the new Stephen Ministers, added: “We are blessed to be able to offer Christ’s compassion through this ministry.”

Tanner Street expects its Stephen Ministry to continue to be a source of warmth, care and blessing for many year to come, enabling the entire congregation to grow as a nurturing community where people are cherished and cared for and their needs taken seriously, all in the name of Jesus Christ.

Anyone interested or who has more questions about the Stephen Ministry at Tanner Street Church of God, or if they know someone who needs care and support at this time, should call the church at (573) 471-5469. For more information, call Stephen Ministries St. Louis at (314) 428-2600 or visit the website at

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