Small Groups Ministry Overview
Here is some information to help answer some general questions and help you to be a little more comfortable should you determine that we move forward in this together.
The groups will not be continuous. We will have three semesters during the year. We will have group sign-ups for each semester. This allows group members to continue their group if they wish but also reassures people that they are not stuck in the same group. By having a definite start and end date, we intend to help people to feel more comfortable with signing up and making a short-term commitment.
General year long calendar
This plan is made in order to correspond with the flow of our lives (i.e. school, holiday vacations, etc.).
Spring Semester – January, February, March
Break (no groups) – April
Summer Semester – May, June, July
Break (no groups) – August
Fall Semester – September, October, November
Break (no groups) – December
Small Groups Kick Off
Starting a ministry of this magnitude that will bring a significant change must be well-planned, sensitive and well-communicated. Here are a few details for the proposed beginning of this ministry.
- Sunday morning sermons on Biblical Community
- I’ll tie in the vision I shared one year ago (the first Sunday in 2012) where we talked about focusing on Worship and Fellowship. This shows the church where God has been working in 2012 and leading us to this point of greater fellowship.
- Begin sign-ups on December 30th. Sign-ups will continue through the first week that groups begin meeting.
- Semester begins on January 13th and lasts for 12 weeks, ending the week of March 31st.
Number, Size and Meeting Times of Groups
- The ideal number in a group is 8-12. Because of this we will cap each group at 15. This assumes that 1-2 will not participate after signing up and that 1-2 will miss each week.
- The desire is to have 60 sign up to participate. Based on this number, we are tentatively planning for 5 groups.
- It would be prudent to have one of the small groups meet at the church building in the annex—assuming that we could recruit a leader and fill the group.
- We will work with each group leader to determine a day and time that will be most beneficial to the ministry. We will allow the leader the flexibility and input to help select the most appropriate date and time.
What will be taught?
- We will have a selection of pre-approved curriculum for the group leader to choose from. This ensures some level of oversight on the group while providing enough flexibility for the leader to find something he is comfortable with and allow him to take ownership in the success of the group.
- We will have semesters in the future that will also include the groups covering the same curriculum. Including occasional semesters where the material is based off of the Sunday morning sermon.
Planning, organizing and implementing this ministry is quite detailed and involved. Here’s the skeleton structure of the administrative side.
Focus – plan the details, set the calendar, review the previous semester, have everything laid out
Form – lock down commitments from group leaders, finalize number of groups, curriculum, etc.
Fill – promote the groups to the church, hold sign-ups and fill the groups.
Facilitate – train group leaders, kick-off the groups, follow-up weekly with each group leader.