“Come, you who are blessed by my Father, take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.” Then the righteous will answer him, “When did we see you hungry and feed you; thirsty and find you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or in need of clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go visit you?” Jesus will reply, “I tell you the truth; whatever you did for the least of these my sisters and brothers, you did for me” (Matthew 25:34-40).
Such is Jesus’ teaching to us, his Church. All are called and equipped by God to minister together as a community of faith, tending to the concerns of those in need.
Lay pastoral visiting is a parish-based ministry, functioning under the supervision of the clergy, where trained parishioners visit members of the parish or community, providing pastoral care and support to those who request it. Pastoral care is understood to involve those activities that promote spiritual and religious health and well-being. Such activities can include prayer, supportive counseling, constructive listening and the ministry of presence.
To function as a lay pastoral visitor, individuals must:
- Have the support and recommendation of their parish clergy.
- Complete the appropriate screening process of the Diocesan Responsible Ministry Policy: Screening in Faith.
- Complete a Lay Pastoral Training program supported by the Diocese.
Training programs have been developed by experienced facilitators who work with parishes interested in developing such a ministry and are scheduled to meet the needs of the parish. A minimum group of eight is recommended to support a training program. Programs can be modified to the context and needs of the parish.
Lay pastoral visitors’ training and education are supported in part by the Chaplaincy Committee of the Diocese.
For more information, contact the Rev. Canon Douglas Graydon, Coordinator of Chaplaincy Services, 416-363-6021 ext. 236 (1-800-668-8932).
Upcoming Events: Please Note
None planned at this time.