… is through small groups.
It’s the primary means by which our church does pastoral care. Many churches strive to maintain a system in which if a person has a need, they go on the church prayer list, perhaps it’s even announced, and then they hope to be visited by someone–usually a pastor/minister. Often, for the sake of discretion, details are left out, and because many present don’t know the person (at least if the church is over about 250 in attendance), the person’s request isn’t taken as seriously and handled very personally. There is a sense that someone else will take care of them. Often this doesn’t happen–or people who don’t know them well do a lesser job because they don’t know the person–and the person knows that. Some dread not knowing someone in the church has a need they didn’t know about. Why? As long as it’s receiving care–who cares. If you are that close to a person–you’ll find out. If you’re not–no need to be nosy 🙂