This weekend at Nativity we’re hosting our annual Small Groups Launch, when we make a parish wide push to get parishioners who have been hesitating into a group. Here are just five of the reasons why small groups matter to any church.
- Small Groups Are an Easy Way to Start Rebuilding
Plenty of studies indicate that the number one reason why people lose interest in church isn’t that they are lazy, or have lost faith in God. It’s because they don’t feel like they belong to church and they don’t feel like they’re being fed there.
Small groups are an effective place to turn that around, and in the process really rebuild your parish culture. We’ve been doing small groups now for over ten years, and I can honestly say this has been one of the keys to the growth and healthy transformation of our parish.
- Small Groups Build One Church
Small groups rally the diverse elements of your congregation around a common message and purpose. Small groups can be catalysts for conversations that take place between people who come from completely different backgrounds. We have groups just for men, women, young adults, elderly adults, mixed couples, moms. But they’re all having the same conversation.
- Small Groups Grow Faith in a Circle
On Sunday people sit in rows; in small groups people sit in circles. It’s where a big church (or any size church) gets small, up close and personal. Healthy spiritual growth is a deeply relational process.
- Small Groups Are a Delivery System for Pastoral Care
At any parish, it just becomes impossible to keep on top of everything happening. Small groups members are empowered to provide ministry to one another. Our small group leaders are essential for communicating and even planning the small-scale pastoral care we want every member to receive. We know that if someone is in a small group they are never alone.
We can think of hundreds of moving stories we’ve heard of beautiful pastoral care in our parish because of small groups.
- Small Groups Are About Life Change
On Sundays, people listen to the message; in small groups, people talk about the message. Small groups allow the opportunity for the congregation to respond to the conversation started in the homily. This conversation can change people’s minds and hearts. And that can change people’s lives.