Congregational Care Team


Team Leader: Judy Steurer

We demonstrate Christ’s love by caring for those in need in the congregation and community by providing structure, support (spiritual, emotional and physical), resources, and training. 

If you'd like to  join a congregational care ministry or if you know of someone that needs care, contact the team coordinator or the church office at 941-907-7333.  


Stephen Ministry
Stephen Leaders: Amy Burling & Sybil Porter

We demonstrate Christ's love by providing high quality, confidential, Christ-centered care to people who are struggling through a difficult time in life—experiencing grief, divorce, job loss, chronic or terminal illness, or some other life crisis. Stephen Ministers are congregation members trained by Stephen Leaders to offer high-quality, one-to-one Christian care to people going through tough times. A Stephen Minister usually provides care to one person at a time, meeting with that person once a week for about an hour. Once a month, Stephen Ministers gather with their Stephen Leaders for supervision and continuing education.  

People interested in becoming Stephen Ministers should consider the following guidelines:

Gifts – Do you have the gift of mercy or healing? Do you show compassion and give encouragement to those in need? Are you a good listener?

Commitment – As a Stephen Minister you will devote time and energy to the ministry and will have the opportunity to make a major difference in another person’s life. 

Training – You will be fully trained before you are asked to provide care.  You will learn about listening, maintaining appropriate boundaries, confidentiality and many other aspects of caregiving.   After completing the initial training, there are periodic continuing education sessions which will help you stay current in your skills.

Support -- You will receive regular support, encouragement and guidance from your Stephen Leaders and fellow Stephen Ministers by participating in monthly supervision meetings.  Your Stephen Leaders are also available to meet one-on-one with you if you require additional guidance in your caregiving relationship.

Prayer – Prayerfully seek God’s guidance as you consider becoming a Stephen Minister.

To discuss your interest in becoming a Stephen Minister, or  if you would benefit from having a Stephen Minister walk with you through a difficult period, contact Amy Burling at ; 919.475.8692,  or Sybil Porter at ; 412.965.9626

You may also wish to explore the Stephen Ministry website at:


Alcoholics Anonymous & Al-Anon  
HEADS UP - All normally scheduled Recovery Group meetings at Harvest ARE NOT MEETING HERE NOW, because our meeting spaces, rooms, and hallways are under construction for the Dream Big Renovation Project.  Contact your group leader for the current meeting locations.  We hope to be able provide meeting space for Recovery Group meetings, when the construction work is completed in the coming months.

AA information is available at the Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Web Site. 

Beyond the Broken Heart



 “Below the grief-hardened surface of my heart is a bubbling fountain waiting to spring forth into life.” – Julie Yarbrough, author of Beyond a Broken Heart

How do you understand grief when your heart is broken by the death of a loved one? To survive and live forward, those who grieve must find answers. Beyond the Broken Heart is a support group for those who are grieving the death of a loved one and are in need of a community to share the loneliness of grief. Scriptural wisdom will be used to explore the issues of grief and offer spiritual encouragement for a life of renewed hope and joy. The group will also offer coping strategies to guide the way back to fullness of life. If you are grieving the death of a loved one, please join us on the journey through grief.

Location: Harvest United Methodist Church

Cost: $13 for participant



Card Ministry

Team Coordinators: Carolyn Eliason, , 515.229.4738

This ministry's mission is to demonstrate Christ's love by sending out birthday,  sympathy and get well cards to members of the Harvest family. This team's responsibilities include: praying for the individual receiving the card, writing a sentiment on the card, attaching address labels and postage, and posting the cards.

College Aged Ministry Harvest Partners

Team Coordinator: Judy Steurer

This ministry team partners Harvest members with Harvest youth heading off to college, providing them with support and prayer and even sending a care package to them to remind them they are loved. 

Cooks Who Care Ministry

Team Coordinator: Terry Cox 

This ministry team demonstrates Christ's love by providing meals to individuals who are unable to cook for themselves due to a recent surgery, serious illness, the birth of a child, or other challenging times. Once the need is determined, a Meal Train is set up and posted so the congregation can sign up to bring meals.

The team leader’s responsibility is to determine the family’s needs, set up a Meal Train on line (which includes dietary restrictions), and provide that information in an email or prayer request.  If you know of a need or have any questions, contact Terry Cox at 941-907-7333 or .

Individuals who are interested in volunteering to cook for a family can have their name added to the call list (you are always free to choose when to serve) or you can contact Terry Cox at ; 941-907-7333 when you see an email request for cooks.

END-OF LIFE Planning Workshop

Periodically we wee offer a 6-week, expert-led workshop on end-of-life planning topics. Stay tuned for more info and for registration information.

Prayer Team Ministry

Team Leader: Tracy Nickens

This team meets each Monday morning to pray over the prayer requests received from Connect Cards submitted by attendees at Sunday worship


Sewing Seeds of Faith

Team Leader: Tracy Nickens

This Ministry team work on projects at home, making prayer shawls, baby and lap quilts and blankets, drawstring bags, toboggans, etc. and distribute them to those in need, including Harvest members and missions, cancer patients and Lakewood Ranch Hospice.

Silent Angel Ministry

Team Coordinators: Cissie Angelo, Harold McDade


When a funeral or memorial service is scheduled at Harvest, the Silent Angel Ministry team assists the pastors and staff with the planning and execution of every aspect of the service, from facility needs to the preparation for and serving at a reception.  

Staying In Touch Ministry

Team Coordinator:  Nancy Reed

Harvest wants people to know they are missed when they have not been in church for a while, so this team sends handwritten notes to those who have missed worship for 6 weeks and 12 weeks. 

Visitation Ministry

Team Coordinators: Sandra Petrucci & Randy Robinson

This ministry's mission is to demonstrate Christ's love by visiting with individuals who are homebound or in skilled care facilities, assisted living facilities, or short term physical rehabilitation situations. A friendly and caring visitation team member visits anyone with a family member or acquaintance who fits these criteria with a regular visit. Primary caregivers also receive a welcome break to run errands or just rest and relax while someone else is visiting with their loved one.

Hospital Visitation Ministry

(Pastoral Staff)

This ministry's mission is to demonstrate Christ's love by visiting with members of the Harvest family who are hospitalized and is carried out primarily by Harvest's pastoral staff. If you know of someone who attends Harvest and is in need of a hospital visit, contact Terry Cox at ; 941-907-7333.


Annual/Bi-Annual Congregational Care events

AED/CPR Classes (offered at Manatee Technical College)
Contact:Judy Boehm 

Cancer Survivor Workshop

End-of-Life Planning Workshop

Grief Share Workshop