Small Groups

After a lot of talk and build up, small groups are starting now! Small groups are a particularly Wesleyan way of discipleship. In a Wesleyan small group, groups of 10-15 people come together weekly to share a meal, read Scripture, pray together, and “watch over one another in love.” We anticipate that our small groups will become a central and beautiful way that God transforms us, our communion, and our city with grace and with love through holy friendship. If you’re interested in starting or joining a small group, please email Rev. Ashley Griffith, Pastor of Community Life agriffith@esumc.org

 

To access the lectionary for each week, click here.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

I want to join a small group! But how? If you’re wondering this, here are some answers. Below are the 5 questions I most often get asked about small groups. Perhaps you’ve found yourself asking one or more of these questions:

1) “I want to be in a small group! Will you please suggest one I can join?”

Small groups are different from most other ministries our church has known because instead of placing people in groups, we’re training and empowering people to create their own groups based on the model and curriculum we provide. This is new and different for us, and it can be confusing because we’re used to programs being offered that we can just show up and try out. The ask for you, the leader or participant, is higher because you’ll be putting in the effort to create the group and plan the logistics along with others in your band. The band is the “core” of the small group. The 3 or 4 people who make up the band will start the group and then invite others in to make a small group totaling no more than 12-15 adults.

2) “What if I don’t know anyone to invite to be in a band or small group with me?”

Maybe you’re new in town, new to the church, or just can’t think of who in your life would want to do a small group with you. Let Ashley know your situation. Ashley will pray along with you about who to ask and she will connect you with others who find themselves in that same position. Remember, it only takes 3 or 4 people total to start a small group. Those 3 or 4 people start as a band and grow from there to form the small group.

3) “What do we do at small group? Do we just eat dinner and talk, or is there more to it than that?”

There’s more to it than that! Small Group training videos 4, 5, and 6 show you exactly what you’ll do in your small group. The consistent things you’ll do together are: share a meal, read the lectionary Scripture texts for the coming Sunday, share your stories, and pray for one another.

4) “Weekly seems like too much of a time commitment. Can we do every other week instead?”

Yes, you can start with every other week, but those who have done small groups before attest that weekly is a better rhythm because inevitably people will miss an occasional group due to work travel or other unavoidable conflicts. If you’re scheduled to meet weekly but you miss a week, it’s only two weeks between when you see the group. If you’re scheduled to meet every other week and you miss a week, suddenly it’s a month or more before you see your small group. That’s not enough consistency to develop the trust and connection of holy friendship among small group members.

5) “OK, I’m in! What do I do now?”

Step 1: Reach out to Rev. Ashley Griffith, Pastor of Community Life. She will train you and support you and your small group, step by step.

Step 2: Get together with your band (3 or 4 people, the core of your small group), have dinner together, and watch videos 1,2, and 3 and discuss. Each video is short, about 3-4 minutes each.

Step 3: Meet with Ashley to ask questions and receive guidance as you get started. Ashley will be holding gatherings on the following days to discuss Module 1 videos, answer questions, and troubleshoot with you as you start your groups:

Sunday, Oct. 24 9:30-10:05 in the Garden Gallery
Or
Tuesday, Oct.26 6:00-6:30 Zoom
Or
By appointment with Ashley (contact Ashley)

Click here to sign up.