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Support for our family of members?

(6 Posts)
dollyjo Mon 21-Mar-16 12:20:44

I have thought long and hard before asking this question. Am I being unfair? What do other churches do?
I have been a practicing Methodist for over 30 years. I think I support my church in what ever ways I can and regularly attend services often reading or making teas, coffees and cakes for the end of services.

Four weeks ago, I underwent major surgery and informed others that I would be unable to attend services for at least 6 weeks.

What hurts is that we call ourselves a 'family church' but since my operation I have not even received a phone call. This week, I was asked to make soup for a Lent lunch which I did and I remarked to the person requesting it that I was rather hurt that no-one had contacted me and I didn't even know if I was on the 'prayers list.'

Her reply was that no one visited her when she had been hospitalised.
By coincidence, I had a visitor from the Church that evening who said that my name had been put on the Prayers list that day. I said, I would like to have taken Communion and she replied that the Minister probably hadn't been told I was ill.

Am I just feeling sorry for myself or does your 'family church' do things differently? I have suggested that someone in the Church should be appointed who will take responsibility for contacts/ visits to members who are absent.
What is your experience and what is the practice in your Church.

Luckygirl Mon 21-Mar-16 12:50:10

Your idea is a good one and let us hope that they take this up. But they shouldn't really need this gentle kick up the rear - it should be integral to their philosphy.

Smileless2012 Sun 27-Mar-16 12:32:05

I'm sorry that you weren't visited or contacted by anyone from your church*dollyjo*sad. I hope you're feeling much better since your surgery. I don't think you're just feeling sorry for yourself, you probably feel hurt and that's understandable.

I read your post to Mr. S. who regularly attends our Methodist Church and he told me they have a sunshine fund for which they have a separate collection about once a month and that fund buys flowers and a card for anyone whose ill, or in need of comfort and support.

I think that's a really good idea and could possibly be adopted by your church but I agree with Luckygirl, care and concern should be shown without prompting.

grannyactivist Sun 27-Mar-16 12:46:00

I'm sorry for your experience dollyjo and glad that you have been proactive in addressing the problem within your church. I think that very often it's individual friends rather than 'the church' in general who keep in touch in the circumstances you've described and I think that's wrong. It demonstrates a clear failing of 'church as family'. I left organised church nearly eleven years ago, but still have a great fondness for the people within local churches. I'm now part of a 'house church' fellowship where being 'family' is the primary emphasis, but I continue to have a great deal of interaction with the more traditional churches in town. When I was ill recently my own church family rallied round and kept in touch regularly and I would have been very surprised if they had not.
I hope you're feeling better now. flowers

mumofmadboys Sun 27-Mar-16 13:06:11

My hubby is a retired vicar and visiting was a high priority for him. People tended to tell him if someone from the congregation was ill.However sometimes someone could fall through the net. It is worth discussing it at your church so that a more robust system can be put in place. I hope you are feeling better and are getting over your hurt.x

Coolgran65 Sun 27-Mar-16 13:06:23

Many years ago as a child I remember our church minister would unfailingly have visited our family home yearly and my df always warmed him up with a wee tot. Every member in the Parish received a visit.

I now live in another town. Dh has been a member of his Church for all of his life and also recalls when the Dean knew every family, he visited every family on a rolling pattern and was assisted by home visiting officers.

How things change - In the last 12 years have never received a visit from either the Rector or a home visitor. My Sister in law has been a member of this same church for her 65 years, being an officer in the youth organisations and a choir member/soloist. About 4 years ago when she was ill noone visited or contacted her, or queried her absence from the choir. She never went back.

I have gradually come to feel that at my funeral I do not want a Church Minister speaking of me who knows nothing about me.

Dollyjo I think that you, and other congregations members, deserve a home visit when ill. A visit that has been prompted does not have the same caring. There is something amiss when the minister or his appointed deputy was not aware (or whomever should have been responsible) - especially when your contributing presence both during and following services was absent.