When should I call my minister?

Annually, we like to share these ideas with you. For some of you, this may be new! For others, it will be a reminder. Know that we want to be helpful—whenever you face a spiritual crisis, or think you might benefit from a chat or advice, or simply need a listening ear.

We believe, as your ministers, we perhaps will be able to help you navigate the challenges of life transitions, difficult choices, or grieving a loss. We may not have answers to all of life’s persistent questions, and we’re not therapists, but we are pretty good listeners, and sometimes we find the right questions to ask, or can provide a good resource.

Know this: You’re not bothering us with your problems. You are not taking time away from more important things. You are important. One main reason you have a minister is to be of help to you; that is what our time is for! This list isn’t exhaustive—but is a beginning.

A minister cannot know when she is needed; you need to tell her. So, don’t hesitate to be in touch with us. And, don’t assume that we know what’s going on with you unless you tell us (even if—sometimes especially if—other people know about it). For example, given federal patient privacy laws, hospitals won’t call us if you are admitted, nor can they verify that you’re there.

So, please give us a call! Our cell phones are in our email signatures. Or just contact the office and they will give you our numbers: office@firstuchicago.org, or 773-324-4100.

Below are just a few of the instances when you might call us:

  1. When you have an important choice to make—education, career, relationship, reproductive choices, etc.
  2. When you have personal problems, job loss, family difficulties, a new diagnosis, mental health problems, or financial strain.
  3. When you are at a transition or turning point.
  4. When your conscience is troubling you.
  5. When you want to talk about religion or you’re wrestling with a spiritual issue or your spiritual path.
  6. When you need encouragement, or perhaps prayer or a blessing.
  7. When you wish to celebrate a success and express gratitude.
  8. When you need help finding your way at the church, getting involved, or making friends here at First U.
  9. When you have children to be named, dedicated, or blessed.
  10. When you want to get married.
  11. When you have marriage or relationship problems—especially lasting more than a month. Often we wait until our relationship drastically deteriorates before reaching out—Reach out early!
  12. When you or a loved one is going into the hospital or is going to be—whether it’s routine or an emergency visit.
  13. When you can’t come to church for a prolonged time and you’d like a visit.
  14. When there is a death or pregnancy loss in the family.
  15. When you wish to discuss funeral arrangements ahead of time.
  16. When you are arrested or in jail.
  17. When you have a question, concern, or suggestion about something. Most questions can be cleared up by simply asking! While we can’t implement every suggestion, your input does matter!
  18. When you are angry with the minister or upset with something in the church.
  19. When you have prospective members for the church in mind.
  20. When you do not yet know the minister and would like to get acquainted.
  21. When you simply want someone to talk with.

We’re here with and for you,

Rev. Teri and Rev. David