Forming Groups

Forming a group

Choose your basis for bringing a group of 6-12 people together, such as:
1. Your friends and neighbors
2. Age-defined groups
3. Gender-defined groups (men’s groups, women’s groups)
4. Marital-status defined groups (singles, couples)
5. Time-of-life groups (ex: parents of toddlers).
6. Cross-age groups: parents with kids, or youth with counselors
7. Groups formed by location, so it is easy to see each other often
8. Groups formed alphabetically (elder assignments could become groups)
9. Support groups
10. A short-term group agrees to continue meeting (for example, new members class)
11. Service groups
12. Interest affinity groups (detail at bottom of page)

Gather members:
List names of people you will invite
Determine how to contact (personal invitation, public announcement)

Determine format:
These c
hoices would be made before inviting people to the group;
Perhaps you will make these in conjunction with those you are planning to invite

Day of week, time, frequency, duration
Where the first meeting will be held
Who the leader is for the first meeting
The topic or Book of the Bible you’ll be starting out with
Whether the group will be primarily a growth group for Christians, or an outreach group existing to introduce
Christianity to non-Christians

The choices you’ve made provide the description you use as you invite people to join your group.

Stress advantages of being in a small sharing group, such as:
Put faith into action by supporting others and praying together
Gain from hearing experiences of others
Form a close-knit group that allows you to bring out your concerns safely
Experience being used by the Holy Spirit to say what will help the faith of others

Introduce the activities of a small group as you invite others:
We’ll discuss questions about faith and life, leading to prayer for one another
We’ll study God’s Word together in a conversational way
Our goal is to have everyone at the meetings for the next ___ months

Resolve individual needs, such as:
Child care

Prepare for first meeting
The next page guides you in your first meeting
The following page gives ongoing support

More about Affinity Groups

One way to increase interest in small groups is to appeal to people’s preexisting hobbies or special interests.  Everyone enjoys getting together with others who have like interests, so it would be a natural way to form a small group.  They could share ideas, or participate in activities, work on projects, etc.

For example, at one congregation there is a small group of couples who get together for Bible study because the husbands are interested in woodworking and often work together on projects for the church.  A quilting group would be another example.

Meetings would include some Bible study or devotion, sharing and prayer.  They could be seasonal, monthly, bimonthly, or weekly. The following are some examples of special interests.  What others could you add to the list?

Scrapbooking / Stamping
Discussing current events / issues from a Christian perspective
Skiing / Snowshoeing
Gardening / wild flowers
Bird watching
Walking / jogging
Book club
Family gym night
Christian men mentoring young boys –  defining what it means to be a Christian man.

 Back to Sharing Group menu page