Webster Presbyterian Church
...that all may come to know Jesus Christ, to love Him, to serve Him, and to enjoy Him forever.
 

About Small Groups

What is a "Small Group"?  It's really quite simple - it is just like it sounds.  A "Small Group" is a group of people, generally with 8-12 members, that meets on a regular schedule for fellowship, study, discussion, prayer, meals, games or other activities.  The schedule and activities of the group are entirely up to the group members.

We plan to organize one or more new small groups in the spring (2013).  If you are interested in participating, please contact us at smallgroups@websterpres.org.

WHY JOIN A SMALL GROUP?

...come to know Jesus Christ, to love Him, to serve Him, and to enjoy Him forever.

  • Meet new people and form new friendships
  • Share Christian fellowship
  • Build long term relationships that support each other when needed
  • Participate in the life of the church
  • Learn more about God and your faith

SMALL GROUPS BUILD STRONG RELATIONSHIPS

Members of groups that have been together for many years have formed close relationships.  These relationships have become invaluable as they deal together with events in their lives.  They have been able to celebrate joys like weddings, births, anniversaries, graduations and new jobs, retirements and almost anything else you can imagine.  They have also been able to share difficult times with each other, and support each other through sicknesses, operations, problems with families and the death of loved ones.  Relationships formed in small groups have made the good times better and the hard times easier to deal with.

HOW ARE GROUPS FORMED?

Groups can come together in a variety of ways.  They may start out as a neighborhood group, or an existing group of friends, or a group of people with some common interests or issues.  One particular group started at a church Lenten series some time ago, with nothing in common except that they were all church members and all attended that particular series at church.  They have been together for about 7 years and formed very close friendships.  Another group has been meeting for almost 30 years.  A third group formed, met for a year or two, and then dissolved. 

Facilitation of the group is up to the group.  You may want to begin with a single leader for all the group sessions, but we have found it to be better when each member of the group shares the responsibility.  You can rotate leaders for every session, or sometimes one person may lead a specific study over several sessions.   Many of the materials on the Recommended Study Guides page include a leader's guide with discussion questions and other material to help the leader prepare a lesson plan.

MEETING FREQUENCY AND FORMAT

Of course, this is again up to the group.  A reasonably consistent schedule is best - but it can be weekly, bi-weekly, monthly or whatever works for everyone.  The summer schedule may be different.  Try to pick a schedule that works for everyone, and stay with it as much as possible.  Be flexible when necessary.

Meetings can be held almost anywhere.   Most groups generally meet in member's homes and rotate hosts every session.  (Normally, the host is not also to discussion leader for the session they are hosting.)  Other choices include restaurants or meeting rooms at the church.  One group even met in a nursing home once when a member was recovering from surgery.

The format is entirely open - you can generally plan for about 2 hours.  A "normal" meeting might open with prayer, go through the discussion material, share joys & concerns, close with prayer and then have coffee and dessert.  You can mix this up with lunches, dinners, picnics and game nights - whatever the group finds interesting.

GROUND RULES

Group members generally agree to some ground rules for their meetings.  Again, these are entirely up to the group itself, but some common agreements might include:

  • Consistent attendance and punctuality, especially when longer studies are used that may take several sessions to complete
  • Open and honest discussion without judgement or criticism of other viewpoints
  • Confidentiality - "what happens in the group stays in the group" is especially important when personal issues and prayer concerns are shared
  • Relax, enjoy and have a good time - groups are supposed to build each other up with Christian fellowship and not be hard work or a burden on anyone