UMCOR

United Methodist Committee on Relief

US Congregational Health

UMCOR supports congregational health programs in the United States that nurture mind, body, and spirit in a holistic way, embracing wellness in all its forms.

Including people with different abilities in all aspects of church life can revitalize a congregation. Learn more about United Methodist deaf and disabilities ministries and become an advocate for the differently abled.

Another way to improve congregational health is to bring a health professional or volunteer into the local church. Faith Community Nurses, also called Parish Nurses, promote preventative care and customize health ministry to fit the needs of each congregation. Although Faith Community Nurses do not provide patient care, they may be involved in a range of activities, such as: 

  • Visiting church members at home or in the hospital 
  • Counseling individuals about health-related issues 
  • Referring people to community resources and helping them obtain health services 
  • Guiding members as they adapt to important lifestyle changes 
  • Teaching classes on how to maintain good health 
  • Providing health screenings 
  • Developing support groups within the church 
  • Training and coordinating volunteers.

Parish Nurses work in a variety of ways: full time or part time, paid or volunteer, individual or in teams, for one congregation or several. They must be current Registered Nurses with special training in spiritual care.

Health advocates are individuals with or without medical training who work with Faith Community Nurses for healthy congregations. The United Methodist Church Health Ministry Advisory Team helps create and sustain health ministries in congregations across the United States. Learn more and contact a team member in your area.

Resources:

Introduction to Health Ministry for United Methodist Congregations (pdf)
Health Ministry for United Methodist Congregations: Concepts of Health, Healing, and Wholeness (pdf)
UMC Health Ministry Network. This website offers many resources for parish nurses, including the complete UMC Ministry Network Toolkit. Use these resources for display at Annual Conference meetings.

A parish nurse makes a home visit to an elderly woman in need.

Global Health