"When individuals are upheld by one another in Christ, nurtured by the Word of God and knit spiritually in a common body they are blessed with vitality as they reach out to a world in need."

– Deborah Van Deusen Hunsinger
Pray Without Ceasing: Revitalizing Pastoral Care

Westminster Presbyterian Church is a caring community of faith, formed in Jesus Christ and bound to God and one another in Christian love. Every member of the body of Christ is called to intercede on behalf of others, bear one another's burdens, and build each other up, sharing our mutual joys and sorrows. The focus of care at Westminster is not only on meeting the needs of every member, from the very youngest to the oldest, but also on enabling all members to identify and carry out their ministries of service to others. In addition to providing support during all of life's transitions and challenges, we hope to promote overall wellness. Most of our resources are available to the community at large. Our model of care is missional, designed to help us reach out in Christ's love to the world around us.

Care Resources

  • Fourth Thursday of each month
  • Noon - 1:00 p.m.
  • Memorial Parlor

Are you a caregiver for someone with Alzheimer's disease or a related dementia? You are not alone. You are invited to join others who are giving such care in a support group sponsored by the Alzheimer's Association. Join us as we support each other on this road that can be a combination of sadness and joy. We will laugh together, cry together, and learn together. Reservations are not necessary, and there is no cost to attend.

For questions, please call 412-835-6630.

The Deacons in conjuction with the Central Blood Bank organize several blood drives at Westminster throughout the year. Please check our Care events for upcoming dates.
The Care Calendar helps us to provide meals, rides, and help when a member needs assistance with daily tasks. Log in to the Members section at the top to access the current needs.

Counseling is available for families and individuals at the church though the The Westminster Samaritan Counseling Center.

To schedule an appointment, please call 412-854-4530
Daytime hours and evening appointments are available.
Counseling

Counseling should always bring us closer to becoming the person God intends us to be. At the Westminster Samaritan Counseling Center, we work on bringing the many facets of a person's life into a harmonious union. We include the mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual dimensions of who you are. We help our clients gain skills that enable them to confront the realities of life, develop solutions to stressful situations and learn to maintain the growth achieved.
We believe that effective counseling takes place in a trusting relationship between client and counselor. Our therapists are caring professionals, dedicated to helping people grow beyond their present situations.
The Westminster Samaritan Counseling Center provides one-on-one counseling for adults, children, adolescents, couples, and families. We also provide spiritual direction, grief support services, group seminars, and retreats.

Committed to Excellence

The Samaritan Counseling Center is fully accredited by the Samaritan institute in Denver, Colorado, which is recognized by The American Medical Association, The President's Commission on Mental Health, The American Association of Pastoral Counselors, and major church denominations.
All of the therapists are state licensed and/or certified by a professional organization. All therapists have one or more Master's degrees and participate in continuing education, peer review and ongoing supervision. We have a consulting psychiatrist.
Our counselors are committed to uphold professional ethical standards which demand strict confidentiality and the utmost regard for the value of the client's time, finances and person.

Fees

A primary goal for us is that professional counseling be affordable without compromising quality, regardless of the client's ability to pay.
Many of our services are reimbursable using health care insurance. An adjusted fee can also be arranged, based on a family's gross income. The Samaritan Counseling Center is an ecumenical, non-profit corporation funded by fees for services and by contributions from churches, businesses, civic groups, individuals and foundations.
Contributions to our Client Aid Fund enable us to offer our services on an adjusted fee basis. If you would like to make a contribution to our center, please contact our main office at 412-854-4530.

Download our brochure to read about our counselors
Extended Home Communion is taken to those who are unable to come to church. If you are unable to come to church and would like to receive communion at home, please call the church office at 412-835-6630.
Our Grief Recovery support group can help you face the challenges of loss and move toward rebuilding your life.
For more information, call 412-835-6630.

The Westminster Job Transition Resources group discusses career transition and managing the job search.

Westminster Connectors
Westminster Connectors is a collaborative effort of caring networkers whose purpose is to help those in need by providing one-on-one employment-related advice, guidance, assistance, or referrals to personal contacts in order to find employment opportunities.


PAPEN (Pennsylvania Professional Employment Network)
Pennsylvania Professional Employment Network (PAPEN) is an on-going job networking group at Westminster Presbyterian Church, which meets to share information about job leads and job search tips.
To learn more about PAPEN visit http://www.papen.us

  • Mondays
  • 7:00-9:00 p.m.
  • Room 131

WorkAble
In October of 2012, SHIM launched a new employment program in partnership with Jewish Family & Children's Service and North Hills Community Outreach. The WorkAble collaboration seeks to help unemployed adults throughout Allegheny County find full-time, income-adequate employment.
To learn more about WorkAble, visit http://shim-center.org/programs/workable.

Open Arms Partners are available to minister one-on-one with people both within and beyond Westminster's community of faith to offer support, respite, and love for those who are experiencing a crisis; who are sick or hospitalized; who are unemployed or underemployed; and/or who would benefit from a friendly visit with a Christian friend.

Open Arms Partners is Westminster's uniquely crafted visitation ministry which replaced and expanded our former Stephen Ministry program. Most of our partnerships are for those who just need someone to look in on them now and then. But others have formed around specific needs such as prayer partners, or rides to worship. Our goal is to build caring relationships centered in Christ; to be a blessing to both givers and receivers.

Please let us know if you or someone you know could benefit from some extra support or visits. We would also love to hear from anyone who might be willing to go out and visit others. Don't hesitate if you have an interest but feel ill equipped. We will be happy to offer the necessary training or coaching you need to get you started.

Blood Pressure Screenings
Registered nurses are available on the first Sunday of each month for blood pressure screenings. This is a quick, simple test that can save your life!

  • First Sunday of the month
  • After the 8:30 and 11:00 services in Memorial Parlor
  • After the 9:45 Bridge service in the WROC

Life Care Transitions Planning
Westminster has developed a planner that will help you reflect on your wishes and provide information your loved ones need to know in the event you become disabled or pass away. Planning is a gift for your relatives, friends, and clergy who can then act in an informed manner to carry out your wishes. To receive a copy of the Life Care Transitions Planner, please contact Peg Kinsey at kinsey@westminster-church.org.


Health & Spirituality Articles
Follow our monthly newsletter, The Spire, for articles on the intersection of health and spirituality.

The Pet Ministry's mission is to ensure that we're being good stewards of God's creation by advocating a greater awareness of what it means to be in love and charity with all the living creatures of our world.

The ministry organizes several programs and events throughout the year. For more information please email petministry@westminster-church.org or call the church office at 412-835-6630.

The Pet Ministry organizes several programs and events throughout the year:

Certified Therapy Dogs
Certified therapy dogs are specially trained to provide comfort, love, and happiness through visits made to hospital patients, nursing home and assisted living residents, and others. The Pet Ministry offers classes throughout the year. For more information, please email petministry@westminster-church.org

Blessing of the Pets
All people-friendly pets and their owners are invited to a celebration that recognizes the animal companions that love us unconditionally. A pastor blesses these special family members and the people who love and care for them. Pets need to be on non-retractable leashes or in carriers, and you'll need to bring proof of current vaccinations. The Blessing of the Pets is held twice a year, in the spring and fall, with dates indicated on the church calendar.


Pet Remembrance Service
It's common to have a memorial service to celebrate the life of a loved one who has died, so why wouldn't we do something similar for our beloved pets? They bring us years of joy and are often regarded as members of the family, and when we lose them our grief can be quite real—which is why we have a pet remembrance service every December to acknowledge the loss and pay tribute to these cherished members of our families. All family members, including pets that are still with us, are invited to come.

Westminster Prayer Group

  • First and third Tuesdays of each month
  • 2:00 - 3:00 p.m.
  • Friendship Village

The Westminster prayer group focuses on prayer for our church's ministry, our community, our nation, and the world, as well as for those in hospitals, those who have suffered a loss, or are experiencing other concerns in their lives. An ongoing list of prayer receivers contains members and non-members of Westminster.


Men's Prayer Group

  • First Tuesday of each month
  • 7:00 - 8:00 a.m.
  • Room 231

All Westminster men are invited to a monthly meeting of our Men's Prayer Group. We will pray for our church's mission and members, our world, and any joys and concerns that we bring to the group. This will be a simple time of reading a scripture passage, prayer, and fellowship. Coffee will be provided.


Fast and Pray Group

  • Independent Fast and Prayer – First Saturday of each month
  • Group Meeting – Second Sunday of each month
  • 8:00 a.m.
  • Memorial Parlor

There is a group at Westminster who fast and pray independently the first Saturday of each month. We specifically pray for our church, our pastors, our Westminster staff, for our worship and activities. We pray for our Session, our Deacons, and our committees. We pray for those who are sick and who have suffered loss while we rejoice for those who celebrate marriage, baptism, communion and confirmation.

We meet the second Sunday morning of each month in the Memorial Parlor at 8:00. Our meetings are brief but we are grateful to know that we have the same desire for our Church: we want our church to have the right relationship with Christ and that our people grow in faith and service.

The fasting practices are up to each individual. Some people cannot skip eating, however you can fast in other ways (internet, television). Fasting is abstaining from something for a certain time to place special attention on God. Fasting draws us closer to God.


Centering Prayer

  • Tuesdays
  • 6:30 p.m.
  • Bride's Room (Room 212)
  • Led by Nana Wilson

The practice of Centering Prayer is an invitation to deep, personal freedom. The method of Centering Prayer is a renewal of the ancient Christian tradition of contemplative prayer which was the goal of Christian spirituality for the first 16 centuries. It is not the type of prayer we are generally used to, like praying out loud or asking for something or even giving thanks. Centering Prayer complements these more active modes of prayer by facilitating a movement into a receptive prayer of resting in God. It is moving deep within ourselves, in silence, saying nothing, asking nothing, just intending to be in the Presence of the ultimate ground of being. Centering Prayer is both a relationship with God and a discipline which fosters that relationship. With Centering Prayer we learn a method of listening to and resting in this Presence.


  • First and third Tuesdays of every month
  • 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
  • Memorial Parlor
  • 20 for new members (one-time fee)

Prayer Shawl Ministry members knit or crochet shawls that are given to persons who are ill, have suffered a loss, or are in the midst of a life crisis. Anyone can make a request for a shawl or recommend a recipient.
Knitters of all levels of experience are welcome, and much attention will be given to beginners. While some may choose to knit in groups or at circles, anyone wishing to work independently is encouraged to do so. There are no deadlines—just present the shawl when it is finished.
Start with a prayer. Before beginning, say a prayer for the individual who may be receiving the shawl. You can pray for healing, good health, and peace. Please take the time to repeat your prayer as you knit. Prayer is good for you as well as the one who will receive the shawl.

For more information, contact Amy Sanders, group coordinator, at grammarqueenbee@hotmail.com.

Worship at Home provides worship materials of the Sunday service including audio cd, written sermon, and bulletin. Contact Peg Kinsey at 412-835-6630x211.

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