Resource Article


Church in Nursing Homes: Developing a Worship Ministry

We never outlive our need to grow spiritually or be part of a worship community. Yet all too often residents of nursing homes do not experience meaningful worship.

So how can we “church“ in nursing homes more effectively?

Care Ministry Program Guides

Are you starting or expanding a caregiving ministry in your community?

This starting point provides general information on the caregiving phenomenon as well as the Leader's Guide, an administrative “How To“ kit for leaders who are starting or growing ministries.

The Leader's Guide addresses general concerns and administrative issues for any type of Caregiving Ministry. It offers suggestions for determining your congregations needs, developing programs, recruiting volunteers and persons in need of care, and maintaining programs by assessing success, locating existing resources in your community, and much more. The Leader's Guide is intended to be used in conjunction with all of the need-specific programs.

What are churches doing to address caregiving concerns within their congregations?

Many churches have implemented programs to assist with transportation, nutrition, education, visitation and many other other areas where caregiving assistance is needed.

We have partnered with several faith organizations to share their successful models of congregational care with you. You may use, borrow, adapt and implement these models as they fit for your group.

If your congregation is already doing group caregiving and you would like to share your models of care, contact us. We are always looking for innovative approaches to share with others. The more we share, adapt and start these types of programs, the greater our ability to care for our congregations throughout the aging process. Feel free to download and redistribute these modules as it helps you.

Ministry Models You Can Use

  • The Leader's Guide addresses generic concerns and administrative issues for any type of Caregiving Ministry. It offers suggestions for fact finding what caregiving needs your congregation has, developing programs, recruiting volunteers and persons in need of care, maintaining programs by assessing success, locating existing resources in your community, and much more. The Leader's Guide is intended to be used in conjunction with all of the need specific programs.

  • Accessibility Ministry The mission of the Disability Ministry is to continue the enduring sign of the belief that every person is a treasure, every life a sacred gift, every human being a unity of body, mind, and spirit by bringing access for inclusion to all. 

  • Care Team Ministry  The mission of the Care Team is to offer practical and compassionate care support to persons living with fatal illness.

  • Education Ministry  offers ways to keep your care-needing population mentally stimulated. New technology instruction is a great example of an Education Ministry, and a wonderful way to encourage interaction with techno-savvy young people and older people.

  • Friends Ministry   helps build meaningful relationships within your congregation. Loneliness is one of the greatest obstacles facing elderly. Reach out as a group, to prevent the dangerous depression that often accompanies loneliness.

  • HandyHelpers Ministry  Many elderly or sick can no longer maintain their homes. All too often, this leads to unsafe conditions. Or, disability requires homes to be retro-fit to be safe and livable. Learn how to help keep homes safe

  • Youth HandyHelpers Ministry Trained young people can conduct home repairs in low- income senior homes. This ministry helps seniors remain independent, teaches youth life skills such as basic home repair and power tool usage, and encourages meaningful inter-generational interaction.

  • Long Term Care Worship Ministry  The mission of the Older Adult Long Term Care Worship Ministry is to offer meaningful worship to residents of nursing homes, to offer an avenue for these residents to grow spiritually and to be part of a worshiping community. This ministry shall be offered by trained volunteers who can minister effectively.

  • Mental Illness Ministry This ministry looks intentionally at issues of mental health and mental illness. By offering the hope and love of God, congregations can walk with families often isolated by the nature of mental illness- an illness that affects one of every four families.

  • Nutrition Ministry  Aging makes many tasks, including grocery shopping and cooking, more challenging. Dietary requirements change with health concerns. Many experience difficulty maintaining healthy nutrition. Caregivers can work as a team to ensure congregation members are fed and well.

  • Older Adult Worship Ministry Intentionally affirms the gift of aging and older adult in church life and service in the world.

  • Safe Facility Ministry  The mission of the Safe Facility Ministry is to provide a safe environment for all within ther congregation, particularly elders who need extra support for tired bodies.

  • Sandwich Generation Ministry The purpose of the Sandwich Gerneration Ministry is to provide support and counsel to those caring for and aging loved on and children under the age of twenty one.

  • Spiritual Ministry  Feeding the mature spirit honors the aging process as sacred and meaningful. Caregivers have the opportunity to encourage and observe the maturation of spiritual development.

  • Transportation Ministry  Physically, aging often prohibits driving as a safe option. Coincidentally, appointments to physicians and other special needs demand more travel. Caregivers can rotate driving to doctors, grocery stores, pharmacies, beauty salon, and church to ensure aging members safely keep appointments.

  • Wellness Ministry  As congregation members age, health concerns are predominate. Parish nurses and other resources can help caregivers support all health aspects.

  • Wellness Ministry to Address Metabolic Syndrome This ministry encourages members to adopt healthy living and behaviors with special emphasis on metabolic syndrome (obesity, hypertension, insulin resistance, and high cholesterol).

  • Wellness Advocacy Ministry This ministry teaches churches how to set up an Advocacy program. Advocacy programs educate congregants on current health issues, help them to identify the relevant spiritual principles of such issues, and suggest actions that are in alignment with such positions.

  • Wheelchair Ramp Ministry This ministry builds wooden modular ramp systems that can be constructed on location or else where and set up at homes of those who are unable to enter and exit their homes with ease.

  •  Wheelchair Ramp Ministry 2 This ministry builds custom wooden ramps on site based upon specific site requirements.

  • Youth Wheelchair Ramp Ministry This youth ministry focuses on group fund raising to purchase steel modular ramp systems that can be erected by youth at homes of those who are in need.

Ministry Contributors

Examples of Ministry Content Partners include...

Caregivers Handbook

This handy guide provides resources, checklists and worksheets
 - all in one place.