The Care and Support Cluster focuses on helping and serving those within the church. From delivering flowers and meals to training lay volunteers for caring visits, the caring cluster responds to:

  • What are the needs of the people at Mt. Zion?

  • Are we helping each other in our needs?

Here is a list of activities performed by the members of the caring cluster:

  • Delivering Flowers-Sanctuary flowers are broken down by volunteers and arranged in individual vases to be delivered to homes by delivery volunteers.

  • Delivering WOW Meals to those in need of meals due to illness or other life circumstances.

  • Visiting those who are home-bound, hospitalized or in need of a friendly visit.

  • In-home communion visits.

  • In addition to this there are several ministries under the umbrella of The Care and Support Cluster.

The Care and Support Clusters

Stephen Ministry

The Stephen Ministry series is a complete system for training and organizing laypersons for caring ministry in and around the congregation. The Stephen Ministry series provides congregations with the structure, training, and resources to set up and administer a complete system for lay caring ministry (called Stephen Ministry) in the congregation. In Stephen Ministry congregations, lay caregivers (called Stephen Ministers) provide one-to-one Christian care to the bereaved, hospitalized, terminally ill, separated, divorced, unemployed, relocated, and others facing a crisis or life challenge. Stephen Ministry helps pastors and congregations provide quality caring ministry for as long as people need it. Who Benefits from Stephen Ministry?

  • People Who Need Care . . .
  • Receive quality, Christ-centered, confidential care for their hurts and needs
  • Find hope, healing, and a new sense of self-worth through the support of a Stephen Minister
  • Know they are remembered and supported by their congregation in times of personal difficulty
  • Receive ongoing care for continuing needs long after the onset of a crisis, when many others have forgotten about them
  • Grow in a deeper relationship with their Lord as they experience God's unconditional love for them through their Stephen Minister
Your Pastors . . .
  • No longer shoulder the entire burden of caring in the congregation, as if the pastor were the only one able, willing, or called to do this ministry
  • Receive support and care from the lay people who are part of the congregation's Stephen Ministry team
  • Reach more members of the congregation with quality Christian care
  • Experience renewed joy and satisfaction as they equip others and so extend the reach of their own ministries
  • Have more time to focus on the ministries that only the pastor can do
Your Lay People . . .
  • Discover, cultivate, and use the spiritual gifts they have been blessed with
  • See themselves as active partners in the mission and ministry of the church
  • Find all aspects of their lives enriched by the distinctively Christian caregiving skills they learn and practice
  • Experience great joy as they see God working through them to bring hope and healing to a hurting person
  • Grow spiritually as they experience the Lord's loving presence in community with other Christian caregivers
Your Entire Congregation . . .
  • Discovers that many members want to be involved in meaningful ministry and will respond to the call to become a Stephen Minister or Leader
  • Becomes a more loving community that is more sensitive and responsive to people's needs for care
  • Is able to provide more quality Christian care, so that fewer people slip through the cracks
  • Is able to reach out to the unchurched who are hurting and introduce them to the healing love of Jesus in their time of need
  • Sees itself as not only being served by the pastor, but as a caring body of believers actively involved in serving one another in love
Our Stephen Leaders Lydia Nafpliotis If you would like more information on Stephen Ministry at Mt. Zion please contact the church office at 770-971-1465

GriefShare Ministry

Moderator Karen Chambers 770-971-1465 Our mission is to help people hurting because of a major life crisis. It hurts to lose someone. Find help at GriefShare. GriefShare is a friendly, caring group of people who will walk alongside you through one of life’s most difficult experiences. You don’t have to go through the grieving process alone. How GriefShare works It may be hard for you to feel optimistic about the future right now. If you’ve lost a spouse, child, family member, or friend, you’ve probably found there are not many people who understand the deep hurt you feel. This can be a confusing time when you feel isolated and have many questions about things you’ve never faced before. “Going to GriefShare feels like having warm arms wrapped around you when you’re shivering.” GriefShare groups meet weekly to help you face these challenges and move toward rebuilding your life. Each GriefShare session has three distinct elements: Video seminar with experts Each week your GriefShare group will watch a video seminar featuring top experts on grief and recovery subjects. These videos are produced in an interesting television magazine format featuring expert interviews, real-life case studies, dramatic reenactments, and on-location video. Support group discussion with focus After viewing the video, you and the other group members will spend time as a support group, discussing what was presented in that week’s video seminar and what is going on in your lives. Personal study and reflection During the week you will have the opportunity to use your workbook for further personal study of the grieving process and to help sort out your emotions through journaling. Your group will spend time discussing questions and comments from the workbook study. Who should come … who should not GriefShare is for people grieving the death of a family member or friend. We understand that there are other losses in life that create feelings of grief. You might be experiencing a job loss, a divorce, estrangement from a child, or the loss of friends because of a move. This grief is real, but it is not the kind of grief discussed in GriefShare sessions. We encourage you to ask a pastor, counselor, or church leader for help in finding resources that will be of specific help in your situation. If you are going through separation or divorce, please consider participating in a DivorceCare program. When to join a GriefShare group You are welcome to begin attending the GriefShare group at any session. Each is “self-contained,” so you do not have to attend in sequence. You will find encouragement and help whenever you begin. You will be able to continue with GriefShare through the next 13-week cycle and view any of the videos you have not seen.

Keenagers (Senior Adult Ministry)

Keenagers general information contact Kim Harison 770-971-1465 Bruce Gumbel Susan Humphries Darline Cohen To provide fellowship, and learning experiences to those with 50+ years of Life Experience. Keenagers 50+ Years of Life Experience "Seniors" with 50+ years life experience are invited to join the Keenagers at our monthly outings on the 4th Tuesday or Thursday of each month. We go out to lunch at local restaurants, enjoy game days & lunch at church or venture out to other venues in Georgia. Sign-up on the list posted on the Keenagers' Bulletin Board in the upper sunday School hallway or contact Kim Harrison at If you would like to be added to the Keenagers' mailing list, please contact Kim Harrison for that as well.

Intercessory Prayer Ministry

Intercessory Prayer Ministry Coordinator Eva Sherwood 770-971-1465 To pray for our members, families and community and to actively encourage prayer within the life of the church. By being open to the working of the Holy Spirit, we pray that God's love, guidance and power would be released for the benefit of His people and to His glory. The Prayer Chapel is located on the Sanctuary level. From the Grand Stairway heading toward the Sanctuary go down the classroom hallway on your right. The Prayer Chapel is the second door on the left heading toward the Bishop's Lake exit. Look for the Prayer Chapel sign above the door. You are invited to come and pray any time the church building is open. On Sunday mornings a Prayer Minister is available to pray with you or serve Holy Communion, or you may pray individually. "And in the morning, a great while before the day, he rose and went out to a lonely place, and there he prayed." Mark 1:35 Prayer Request Cards Prayer Request Cards are available in the pews in the sanctuary and chapel and upon request in the office or prayer chapel. You may fill out a prayer request card and place it in the offering plate, deliver it to the prayer chapel or give it to one of our ministers. These requests will be prayed over in the Prayer Chapel during the morning services and at the staff meetings. Concerns (unless marked private) will also be relayed to our caring coordinator and printed in the bulletin for the congregation to pray over. Prayer Requests by Phone or Email Prayer requests may also be called into the office during open hours or emailed to a confidential email address,, as you see fit. These requests will be added to the Prayer Chapel requests and prayed over during the next morning services and at staff meetings.Concerns (unless marked private) will also be relayed to our caring coordinator and printed in the bulletin for the congregation to pray over. Prayer Resources - Prayers For the Human Family
O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us, through Jesus your Son:
Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. For Peace
Eternal God, in whose perfect kingdom no sword is drawn but the sword of righteousness, no strength known but the strength of love:
So mightily spread abroad your Spirit, that all peoples may be gathered under the banner of the Prince of Peace, as children of one Father; to whom be dominion and glory, now and forever. Amen. For Peace Among Nations
Almighty God our heavenly Father, guide the nations of the world into the way of justice and truth, and establish among them that peace which is the fruit of righteousness, that they may become the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen. For Our Enemies
O God, the Father of all, whose Son commanded us to love our enemies:
Lead them and us from prejudice to truth; deliver them and us from hatred, cruelty, and revenge; and in your good time enable us all to stand reconciled before you; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. For the President of the United States and All in Civil Authority
O Lord our Governor, whose glory is in all the world:
We commend this nation to thy merciful care, that, being guided by thy Providence, we may dwell secure in thy peace. Grant to the President of the United States, the Governor of this State (or Commonwealth), and to all in authority, wisdom, and strength to know and to do thy will. Fill them with the love of truth and righteousness, and make them ever mindful of their calling to serve this people in thy fear; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen. Resource Links World Methodist Prayer Team A cyber space prayer room to pray with and for others. 24-7 prayer 24-7 is a worldwide, non-stop prayer movement. It also involves missions targeting the youth culture with the purpose of bringing them back to Jesus. NLC believes in the power of persistent prayer and evangelism. Jericho Walls International The Jericho Walls International Prayer Network makes it possible to unite in prayer effectively for various issues facing the people of the world. Articles and prayers are also available in various other languages. Moms in Touch Moms In Touch International is a place for mothers to connect in prayer for their children, their school and one another.

Visiting Lay Ministry

Coordinator Becky Sanders 770-971-1465 The mission of the Visiting Lay Ministry is to bring Jesus’ commandment, take care of my sheep, John 21:16 to life by visiting, listening and providing spiritual support in a confidential manner. Take care of my sheep, John 21:16 - Jesus calls laity as well as clergy to take care of others. Focus of Visiting Lay Ministry Visiting Lay Ministers focus includes visiting, listening, praying, sharing scriptures and serving communion to comfort and provide spiritual support to Care Receivers in a confidential manner. Visiting Lay Ministers are lay members that are trained to complement and supplement the Mt. Zion clergy’s on-going pastoral care and serve on request and behalf of the Mt. Zion clergy. The Visiting Lay Ministers report back to Pastors after their visit. Lay members of Mt Zion United Methodist Church receive comprehensive training and screening before they are given the role of Visiting Lay Ministers. Visiting Lay Ministers respond to short-term care needs and homebound members, working beside the Stephen Ministers as they continue to assist in longer-term care needs. It is not appropriate for Visiting Lay Ministers to transport Care Receivers to medical appointments or other activities. Purpose of a Visiting Lay Minister: To walk alongside someone experiencing illness, the death of a loved one, being homebound or other circumstances deemed appropriate by Mt. Zion’s Pastors

  • To visit people in the hospital, nursing facilities or in their homes
  • To listen to and affirm people in a confidential manner
  • To encourage people to a deeper walk with Christ
  • To pray for and with people who are hurting or discouraged
  • To serve Communion in hospitals, nursing facilities or homes
  • To provide spiritual support
  • To be a living witness of Christ's love and grace

Member Care Outreach

Member Care Outreach Member Jean Barrier 770-973-1330 Member Richard Wilpers 770-377-9666 Member Patti Weaver 770-977-4055 Staff-Member Rev. Debra Stewart 770-971-1465 Staff Member Rev. Harden Hopper 770-971-1465

Take Them a Meal

Coordinator Karen Yanosky 770-971-1465 To support members facing unusual family stressors by delivering dinner during their difficult period. Supporting families during times of crisis by taking away the pressure of having to cook in order to get a nutritious and comforting meal. A handy link is provided, using the Take Them a Meal app, making coordination of services easy and effiicient. The link will be provided to members who have indicated their willingness to participate in this ministry. The link may also be published to a wider church neworkt, when appropirate.