We want our church community to be a place where we are known, a place where God’s love is reflected to each of us in practical ways. We weren’t meant to go through life’s challenges on our own, and we want to be a community that cares for each other through the whole range of life’s experiences. Whether it’s a crisis, or working through challenging personal issues, it can be helpful to have someone there to help along the way. Jesus said, “As I have loved you… love one another” (John 13:34). This is one reason we encourage everyone to be involved with a life group. However, some of our problems require more time and attention than a life group can provide. That’s where our Care Ministries come in. Not sure which resource to start with? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll happily guide you through the process.
Please expand each section below to read about prayer ministry, spiritual direction, premarital counseling, pastoral and professional counseling, and other resources.
On most weekends we end the celebrations with worship and a time of prayer ministry at the front of the auditorium, during which time individuals can receive prayer from our trained team. Prayer ministry includes prayer for blessing, receiving Christ, God’s empowering presence, physical, emotional & relational healing, and freedom from spiritual oppression.
If you have a prayer request, feel free to email the Prayer Chain, where our leaders & prayer ministers will have the chance to pray alongside you.
Spiritual Direction provides a regular opportunity for you to focus on how God is active in your life and how you are responding. This usually leads to a greater appreciation of God’s love for us and our desire to love God in return. Meetings tend to last an hour and occur monthly. Contact Rick Rykowski, Leader of the Spiritual Direction Training Program at 734/474-7016 for further questions or to request the names of some Spiritual Directors.
Spiritual Direction is a one-on-one ministry aimed at helping us to hear God’s voice and perceive God’s action in our everyday life. We believe that God is present and active in all aspects of our life and is often calling us in particular directions and to particular actions. Meeting with a spiritual director provides a safe, private, nonjudgmental context where we can investigate and discern these movements of God in our life. With spiritual direction, you remain in charge of the process; you decide what to talk about and the nature of the personal information shared.
While spiritual directors have received training in various forms of personal prayer and spiritual growth, the primary focus is not to teach prayer methods or to provide answers to specific questions (though this often occurs). The primary focus is your awareness of God’s action in your life and your response. This usually leads to a greater appreciation of God’s love for us and our desire to love God in return.
As we believe that God desires to be present and active in every area of our life, any aspect of our life is appropriate for discussion with your spiritual director. This includes many of the issues addressed by counseling or psycho-therapy, such as challenges in relationships, family, jobs,etc. However, spiritual direction is not an designed to address significant emotional or psychological issues. These are best addressed by certified counselors, clincial psychologists and psychotherapists.
What is Spiritual Direction?
Spiritual direction is a one-on-one ministry which developed in the church during the 3rd century. Its primary goal is to help us hear Godʼs voice and perceive Godʼs action in our day-to-day life. This normally involves talking about our experience of God in personal and corporate prayer and worship. But it can often also include every other aspect of our life (our job, raising children, our relationship with our spouse and friends, our areas of service, forms of recreation and rest, etc.), as we presume that God is present and active in all aspects of our life. We also presume that God is calling us in a particular direction in each of these areas and is communicating this direction to us. It is not the job of the spiritual director to tell you what Godʼs direction for your life is. But it can be quite helpful to have someone to talk to in a safe, private non-judgmental context.
How Does Spiritual Direction Differ from Counseling, Mentoring, etc.?
Spiritual direction is designed to enhance the normal process of spiritual growth in your life. It is not designed to address significant emotional or psychological issues. With spiritual direction, you remain in charge of the process. You decide what to talk about and the nature of the personal information shared. Protecting the autonomy of the person receiving direction is a very high priority. The spiritual director primarily listens, asks open-ended, probative questions and offers encouragement to help you get more in touch with God in your life. In contrast, counseling tends to focus more on solving specific problems. A counselor is likely to take a more active role in this process. Mentoring usually pairs an older, more experienced person with a younger person in order to pass on that wisdom and experience. While spiritual directors have received training in various forms of personal prayer and spiritual growth, the primary focus of spiritual direction is not to teach prayer methods or to provide answers to specific questions (though this often occurs). The primary focus is the growth in your relationship with God, which is broad on the one hand (your entire life) and very personal and specific to you on the other.
Why is the Vineyard Encouraging Spiritual Direction?
Spiritual direction has been used by many Christians serious about growing closer to God for over 1700 years. Most of this track record has been within the Catholic and Orthodox Christian traditions. However, in the past 40-50 years, spiritual direction has spread to a variety of Protestant traditions. The fact that spiritual direction focuses on the individualʼs relationship with God and does not provide a specific program or set of techniques for growth means that it is not tied to a specific sacramental or confessional system.
Spiritual direction fits particularly well with the center-set approach of the Vineyard. One of our goals is to help you “aim” your life towards Jesus, the center. Spiritual direction provides a regular opportunity for you to focus on how God is active in your life and how you are responding. This usually leads to a greater appreciation of Godʼs love for us and our desire to love God in return. This also often provides us with greater clarity of how God might be leading us to adjust the trajectory of our life in order to be more oriented towards Jesus. Talking with a spiritual director can help us decide whether certain feelings or thoughts are from God or not and help us decide to follow those leadings or resist them. Sometimes we doubt experiences which might be from God or think that we are strange in some way. Sometimes we doubt that God is listening to us or even cares about us. Spiritual direction provides a safe place to talk about these experiences and these doubts. All conversations are private and confidential.
Historically, the primary hindrance to receiving spiritual direction has been a lack of trained spiritual directors. The Vineyard is trying to actively alleviate this lack by developing its own spiritual direction training program in the church. A dozen people from the church are currently in a two year program to become spiritual directors.
Who Decides What We Talk About?
The topic or topics discussed at each meeting are set by the person receiving “direction”. The spiritual director does not have an agenda for you. Early on, knowing what to talk about and coming up with experiences to discuss can be challenging. Your director will assist you in examining various areas of your life in order to begin discerning Godʼs actions. But the primary responsibility to bring these experiences to your meeting will remain with you, not your director.
Is There a Cost for this Service?
Some directors charge a fee for this service (e.g., $25-30 per meeting) or ask for a donation. (There are expenses related to becoming and remaining a spiritual director.) Others offer this service free of charge. Practical arrangements, such as fees, are usually discussed at the first meeting.
When and Where Would We Meet?
Meetings tend to last an hour and occur monthly. Meetings can be more frequent, if you desire, particularly in the beginning. Some directors meet at their home. Others meet people at the church or another semi-public place.
What is My Commitment If I Start Spiritual Direction?
You can stop your relationship with your director at any time, for any reason. Your director can also do the same. You can also decide to change spiritual directors if your specific spiritual direction relationship isnʼt working as well as youʼd like. We appreciate receiving feedback on how spiritual direction is working for you while you are receiving it and also if you decide to stop or change directors. In the event you would like to change directors, we will gladly help you in that process.
How Do I Find a Spiritual Director?
You can talk to any of the pastors at the church or to Rick Rykowski, the leader of our spiritual direction training program at 734/645-1103. You will be given the name of one or more spiritual directors whose strengths and background might provide a good fit with your situation and desires for spiritual growth. You then usually meet with your potential spiritual director once in order for both of you to get to know each other so you can discern whether this is likely to be a good relationship. Either of you are free to decline without providing a reason.
If you have any questions, contact Rick Rykowski at 734/474-7016.
Premarital Counseling & Weddings
Pastoral & Professional Counseling Services
Sometimes problems might require the advice and counsel of a pastor. Our Pastors & Directors do take counseling appointments from time to time. Our policy, however, is for pastors to refrain from long-term counseling and to limit to appointments to one or two. For care beyond this we will generally refer to one of our specific care ministries or to a professional counselor (see below). To see a pastor for counseling or referral, please contact the main office by email or call the church office: (734) 477-9135.
Vineyard Church of Ann Arbor does not provide professional counseling, but does have relationship with many of the fine Christian counselors in our area. If you have no Insurance coverage you may want to contact an agency that can provide counseling on a sliding scale fee structure.
Note: These services are not affiliated with Vineyard Church of Ann Arbor
Crossroads Counseling PLLC: 2900 Packard Road, Suite 1, Ypsilanti, MI 48197. Phone: (734) 528 9703. Recommended Michele Wolf Psy. D. Clinical Psychologist.
Family Counseling Center: 3840 Packard Road Suite 220, Ann Arbor, MI 48108 Phone: (734) 477-9999. Recommended: Greg Hocott
Gordon Prepsky: (Raphael Counseling Services) 5475 Morgan Road, Ypsilanti, MI 48197. (734) 572-0255.
Huron Valley Child Guidance Clinic: Counseling for children to 18 years. Individual, group, and family counseling. Sliding-scale fees. Medicaid and limited insurance accepted. Call Washtenaw County Health Services Access, (734) 544-3050 for referral. Address: 2940 Ellsworth, Ypsilanti Phone: (734) 971-9605
Note: These services are not affiliated with Vineyard Church of Ann Arbor
Addiction Center: Addiction Center is an information hub that about everything that is addiction. They provide excellent prevention tips and drug abuse resources. They also review top treatment centers to help you find the one that gives you or your loved one the best chance at a successful recovery.
Addiction Guide: Addiction Guide is your reliable source on addiction and the dangers of illicit substances. We cover how drugs and alcohol affect the body, how to identify the signs and symptoms of abuse, and where to seek effective treatment. Our mission is to guide you and your loved ones to a healthier life.
Addiction Resource: Our goal at Addiction Resource is to provide a wealth of information to help individuals struggling with an addiction and provide support to their loved ones so that they may stay on the road to recovery, and successfully overcome addiction for life. We believe in our ability to help improve the lives of others, and belief is what motivates us to educate and support our readers every day.
Alcoholics Anonymous: 31 South Huron St., Ypsilanti, MI 48197. HelpLine: (734) 482-5700 or website.
Alcohol Rehab Guide: An online resource that connects alcoholics and their families with the help they need to conquer this disease. Their goal is to help individuals and their loved ones by providing them with information on the signs of an alcohol abuse, the effects and the support options for those involved.
The AlcoRehab team is a group of professionals who are passionate about helping those struggling with alcoholism. We are devoted to providing free support and resources for people who are fighting an alcohol addiction and their loved ones.
Arbor Hospice & Home Care: Care for terminally ill adults, children and their families in the home and in the Arbor Hospice Residence, a 30-bed hospice and skilled nursing facility. Also offers a grief support program for children and adults. 2366 Oak Valley Dr Ann Arbor, MI 48103. Phone: 662-5999 or Toll Free (888) 992-2273 (24 hours).
Avalon Housing is a non-profit organization dedicated to developing and managing permanent supportive rental housing for people with extremely low incomes in Washtenaw County. 603 W. Huron Street Ann Arbor, MI 48103 Phone: (734) 663-5858
Catholic Social Services Food Program: Non-perishable and perishable groceries and personal care items distributed to individuals and families in need. Northside Community Center, 815 Taylor St , Ann Arbor, MI 48105
Phone: (734) 662-4462
Chelsea Arbor Treatment Center: Assessment, intensive outpatient treatment, and detox for people with problems with alcohol or other drugs. Outpatient services for substance abusers and their family members, adolescents, and health care professionals in recovery. Accepts most insurance. 955 W Eisenhower Circle, Suite B, Ann Arbor, MI 48103. Phone: 734-930-0201 or 1-800-828-8020
CLEAR House Chemical Dependency Program: An extensive outpatient chemical dependency program. Offers group and individual therapy. 3879 Packard Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48108. Phone: (734) 973-1900.
Dawn Farm: The goal of Dawn Farm is to assist addicts and alcoholics in achieving long term recovery. Dawn Farm will identify and remove barriers that prevent addicts and alcoholics from joining the recovering community. (734) 485-8725.
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: the nation’s leading patient-directed organization focusing on the most prevalent mental illnesses – depression and bipolar disorder. (800) 826-3632.
Detox Rehab: At Detox to Rehab, our goal is to be the only place you need to go to find out everything you need to know regarding addiction and recovery. We’re not only here to be your encyclopedia, we can also help you to find the perfect place for you or your loved one to get clean and sober. Detox to Rehab: Real Resources, Real Recovery.
Domestic Violence Project / SAFE House: Free services for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault and their children. Crisis counseling, shelter, legal advocacy, and drop-in support groups. 24-Hour Crisis Line: (734) 995-5444.
Drug Rehab Center: An online resource that equip’s patients and families with the best information and tools to overcome addiction and lead a lifelong recovery.
Family Life Services: If you are (or might be) pregnant, and are worried, confused, or alone, let us help. 2900 Packard Rd., Ypsilanti, MI 48197 Phone: (734) 434-3088.
Full Circle Community Center: Full Circle is an activity center which provides social and recreational rehabilitation opportunities to adult consumers of mental health services. The goal of the program is to operate an entirely consumer-run community activity center. Full circle provides five weekly peer support groups, two dual recovery support groups and many weekly recreational activities. 10 South Prospect Road, Ypsilanti MI 48198. Phone: (734) 485-2020.
Help Guide: A trusted non-profit guide to mental health and well-being
Homeless Empowerment Relationship Organization (HERO) of Washtenaw County: Serves homeless and at-risk adults; provides classes, one-on-one assistance, and resource referrals. Also donates food and clothing. 3810 Packard, suite 240. (734) 975–6849
Hope Dental Clinic: Hope Dental Clinic provides general preventive and restorative care to those without insurance or medical benefits. There are eligibility guidelines based on family size and income. (734) 480-9575.
Hope Medical Clinic: Hope is a nonprofit, interdenominational Christian medical and social service organization. Our goal is to provide compassionate and practical help to those in need, ministering to the whole person. This includes providing comprehensive health care for the medically indigent and a range of other services aimed either at meeting basic needs or equipping people with the tools needed to improve the quality of their lives and/or to become self sufficient. (734) 481-0111.
Interfaith Hospitality Network of Washtenaw County at Alpha House: Temporary shelter, food, and support services for homeless families. Volunteer coordinator: Joel Eckel, email@example.com. 4290 Jackson. (734) 822–0220
National Child Abuse Hotline: Crisis counseling for children in abuse situations and adult survivors of abuse. Offers referrals for services related to suspected abuse and those who want information on related issues. (800) 4-A-CHILD(422-4453) (24 hours).
Ozone House: Runaway, homelessness, and crisis counseling service for teens by phone or on a walk-in basis, free of charge. Family and parent counseling available. On-site emergency housing available up to 14 days for ages 10-17. Group home and emergency housing for youth ages 17-20 are also available. 1705 Washtenaw, Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: 662-2222 (24-hour crisis line).
RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network): the nation’s largest anti-sexual assault organization. (800) 656-HOPE (24/7)
RehabCenter.net is a resource connecting those suffering from addiction and their loved ones with exceptional rehabilitative services. With a library of expert articles and information on addiction treatment, RehabCenter.net helps guide its readers toward recovery.
Robert J. Delonis Center (Shelter Association of Washtenaw County): Housing placement assistance, emergency shelter (50 beds), meals, health care, HIV/AIDS testing, job-seeking assistance, mental health advocacy, support groups, literacy support, resource referrals, and other services for men and women without homes. Lunch served Mon.–Fri. noon–1 p.m.; dinner served Mon.–Fri. 5:30–6:30 p.m., Sat. & Sun. 3–4 p.m. Call for seasonal shelter intake hours. Services free. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org 312 W. Huron (734) 662–2829
Rx Dangers Aims to be your trusted resource, educating the public about all defective medical devices and dangerous medications that are available on the market today. We accomplish our mission by providing you with a one-stop resource where you can find comprehensive information about these defective drugs and medical devices. Our website is continually being updated with FDA Recalls, and our goal is to spread awareness, creating a safer environment for all consumers.
SOS Community Services: responds with care and respect to families in need by working in partnerships that result in economic, family, and residential stability. Our services include: Short-term housing crisis counseling and case management; Eviction prevention; Utility assistance; Distribution of emergency food and personal hygiene items; Shelter location and housing relocation services; Housing-related transportation assistance; Short-term shelter for homeless families and children; Intensive case management for homeless families; Subsidized transitional housing and supportive services for homeless families; Employability skills training and educational supports; Life skills training; Parenting programs and play groups; Therapeutic day care for homeless children; After-school and substance abuse prevention programs for homeless children. 101 S. Huron, Ypsilanti, MI 48197. Phone: (734) 485-8730
Fax: (734) 485 8739. Email: email@example.com
Teen Rehab Center: Helping to steer your teen away from drug and substance abuse problems is a difficult task. But being involved, and staying involved, in your teens life can be one of the strongest method to helping prevent the disease of addiction.
Tobacco Free Life: The Tobacco-Free Life Organization is a leading organization with a mission to save lives by ending worldwide disease, damage and death caused by tobacco. This is accomplished through research, education and advocacy.
U-M Psychiatric Emergency Services: 24-hour crisis line providing counseling for suicide and other emotional emergencies. Website. Address: U-M Hospital, Level B1 Phone: (734) 996-4747.
Washtenaw County Community Mental Health: Services include outpatient psychotherapy, psychiatric evaluations, medication monitoring, case management, employment services, socialization activities, supportive living and crisis stabilization. 2140 East Ellsworth, Ann Arbor MI 48108. Phone: (734) 971-2282. Suicide Prevention: (734) 996-4747.