Friday, April 10, 2015

Discovery Place Resources: Vital Congregations have Vital Small Groups

The Annual Conference theme this year is “Alive In Christ Together … Equipping Vital Congregations.” But what is a vital congregation? The United Methodist Church lists several markers of a vital congregation. One of those markers states that vital congregations need to have effective small group ministries. Jesus began his ministry by teaching his disciples in a small group. John Wesley began a worldwide movement by creating a system of small groups. And any vital church today must have a system in place that teaches and shapes disciples in close, accountable communities.

If you need a little guidance with starting small groups in your local church, Discovery Place has some resources that may help. Below are just a few, but you can find a complete list by going to the online catalogue on our website and searching under the subject “Small Group Training.”

Small Groups, Getting Started: This book describes how people who have come to a new or fresh commitment of faith can nurture, extend, and apply their faith by being involved in small groups.

Leading Life-Changing Small Groups: Like nothing else, small groups have the power to change lives. They’re the ideal route to discipleship — a place where the rubber of biblical truth meets the road of human relationships. The unique, ready reference format of this book gives small group leaders, pastors, church leaders, educators, and counselors a commanding grasp of: Group formation and values; meeting preparation and participation; leadership requirements and responsibilities; discipleship within the group; the philosophy and structure of small groups; leadership training.

Building a Church of Small Groups: Our hearts were made for deep, authentic relationships, for community. And like nothing else, small groups provide the kind of life-giving community that builds and empowers the body of Christ and impacts the world. Part 1 presents the theological, sociological, and organizational underpinnings of small groups. You’ll discover why they are so vital to church health. Part 2 moves you from vision to practice. Part 3 shows you how to identify, recruit, train, and support group leaders. Part 4 helps you deal with the critical process of change as your church develops its small group ministry.

Starting Small Groups: This book provides tools for designing and implementing a comprehensive and effective small group ministry which is equipped to meet the various needs of an entire congregation.

Building and Growing Your Small-Group Ministry: This book is designed for churches that are just beginning to consider small-group ministry and those that want to make their small-group ministry more vital.

ReGroup Training: Groups to be Groups: The ReGroup™ small group DVD and participant’s guide will lead you and your group together to a remarkable new closeness and effectiveness. Designed to foster healthy group interaction and facilitate maximum growth, this innovative approach equips both group leaders and members with essential skills and values for creating and sustaining truly life-changing small groups.

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