011: Member Care Documents
In implementing a pastoral communication strategy, I have found it helpful to create several documents to help me try and do pastoral care well.
The first document is the ‘How’ document. In this document, by the name of every member I tick off all the different ways they can be communicated with. Can they be contacted face-to-face? (hopefully yes); phone?; Zoom?; Text?; WhatsApp?; Email?; Handwritten letters?
The second document is the ‘When’ document. In this document, by the name of every member I note the date (when did I contact the member of the church?), the means that I used (was it face-to-face, or by Zoom, or text etc?), and why I contacted them (was it to catch up, to respond to an emergency, regular ask for prayer requests, to tell them I’ve been praying for them?).
The final document is the ‘What’ document [A Field Notes, LEUCHTTURM1917 or Moleskine notebook would work well as a non electronic alternative for this document]. If I have met with, spoken to, or received prayer requests from a member, I try to write down a summary of the communication, especially information learned about them, taking care with recording confidential info. This document is good for referring to prior to getting in contact with a member again and also for praying specifically for them. It can be encouraging to see when prayers for members have been answered. I’ll also include a note to remind me when to contact them again.
(Photo: Julia Joppien)