PASTORAL CARE

From the 2021 Ministry Narrative

Pastoral Care takes on a variety of expressions unique to every parish and context. For most communities of our size, parishioners take care of each other in times of need. We also are fortunate to have a capable staff and 6 retired clergy in our pews who are available for any pastoral emergencies that might arise.

Fr. Charlie volunteers for a week’s worth of on-call shifts at Logan Health per month, providing spiritual care to patients and families in extremely difficult situations.

Clergy and lay Eucharistic visitors take communion to our brothers and sisters at the hospital, the Montana Vets Home, and the Springs, and perform home communions for parishioners who are unable to attend church in- person. Because of the lockdown, Christians in some of our senior living facilities had not received Communion in over a year.

Each Thursday, Fr. Charlie (with the help of Mariel Cole) celebrates a Eucharist at the Springs Senior Living Center. We lost many residents at the Springs and the Vet's home the past year and have held numerous funeral services at those communities to aid them in their grief.

Parishioners know that at any time, all they need to do is pick up the phone or send an email or text to be connected with the prayer chain or any other type of support. As a church, we are not only able to do that, but we are eager to do what we can to help each other out when times are tough. During this pandemic, we’ve bought each other groceries, sent care packages, taken each other to the doctor, written notes, and made phone calls “just to check in”. Each Monday, our flower guild delivers our altar flowers to those who are ailing or alone.

After months of social distancing, we are seeking to grow our lay Eucharistic visitor team, and have formed a loose “St. Christopher’s Guild” to drive homebound parishioners to church.

Finally, the Church provides considerable pastoral care to many we only know through stories.

The wider mission of the church, again supported by our diocesan assessment, provides extensive pastoral care for those in the dawn of life, the children, and to those in the twilight of life, the elderly. Our pledges and our gifts support ministries which provide not only direct services, but also training to lay and ordained ministers throughout our country and the world.