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Churches Surprised at Impact and Success of Grief Ministry

Churches are offering a ministry program to help people heal from the deep pain of bereavement. The resulting impact on the churches themselves has been surprising.

Contact: Samuel Hodges, Executive Producer, Church Initiative, 800-395-5755, ext 247, shodges@churchinitiative.org

WAKE FOREST, N.C., Aug. 31 /Christian Newswire/ -- Churches across the nation are using GriefShare to help people who are grieving a death. Those offering this weekly, lay-driven ministry are surprised by the impact GriefShare is having on their churches.

Rev. Jim Bates of Quarryville, PA, has observed church members becoming more proactive in wanting to help families outside the church through GriefShare. "We've seen the church come alive to minister to people outside of our walls. People have rallied around our GriefShare coordinators to help behind the scenes and come alongside them."

GriefShare has also been found to grow churches, introduce people to Christ and lessen staff counseling loads.

"Pastors will be pleasantly surprised about the way GriefShare can be used for community outreach and bringing people into their sphere of influence that they would never have had apart from this," explained Pastor Denny Stevenson of Evansville, IN. Because GriefShare is a very specific ministry, it allows churches to come in contact with unchurched people from their community who are looking for answers and hope during one of life's toughest times.

As more people attend the church, more hear the gospel message. Every person who attends GriefShare hears about the lasting hope and comfort found in Christ. Debbie, a women's minister in Brandon, FL, has seen hundreds of hurting people come in their doors because of GriefShare. "And when they leave, many have found Christ."

Pastors and church staff who often struggle to meet the many needs in a church body on their own are thankful for this lay-led program. "It's very easy for our lay leaders to run with the program," said Rev. Bates. "They have everything they need at their fingertips, and they have support from Church Initiative [GriefShare's parent ministry]." As Lisa Craig, a lay leader from Colorado Springs, CO, says, "We are able to run the ministry pretty much by ourselves."

About GriefShare
GriefShare equips over 7,000 churches across the nation and in other countries. For more information, visit
www.griefshare.org/startagroup/?ministry. Or call 800-395-5755.