Small Groups

Small Groups

Duncan Macleod

Resources for learning and belonging
If Small Groups are one of the keys to ministry with Young Adults,
where do you start with resources?Have a look at these series reviewed by Duncan Macleod

 

Belonging, a resource from Uniting Church in Australia, provides a great resource for helping young adults explore their faith and membership of the Christian church.


Belonging can be used by young people and adults, aged fifteen and over, and by groups and individuals. Belongingexplores the traditions of Christianity, joins with the church in understanding God’s actions in the world today, and challenges participants to explore what it means to be co-creators of God’s kingdom. It explores the topics of belief and life that are central to the Christian faith, usingBelonging offers a variety of settings in which all this can be done, and can be used for many different purposes: in particular, for those who want to explore the Christian faith and its impact on life, and those who are preparing for Adult Baptism, a reaffirmation of their Baptism, or for Confirmation. Each session includes outlines for Bible study, meeting with mentors, action learning, and group process.

The twelve sessions are: Belonging to God, Belonging to God’s people, Belonging to God’s world, Believing in God, Believing in Jesus Christ, Believing the Good News, Growing in Worship, Growing in the Spirit, Growing with Scripture, Sharing our Gifts, Sharing our Faith, Sharing our World.

The Belonging kit comes with photocopiable resources, a floppy disk with background text for leaders, a CD with contemporary songs and stories, and full printed background material for leaders. You’ll need to buy a separate journal for each participant.

For more information check out the Uniting Education Website or email Cheryl Lawrie atcheryl@unitinged.org.auHave a look at a New Zealandchurch’s evaluation of the Belonging Kit. 


Serendipity House, USA, are major providers of study resources for small groups.

Ideal for work with young adults is the FOCUS SERIES.
Topics covered include Man-to-Man communication (beyond football and the weather); Singleness; Marriage; Self identity; Stress; The life of Christ; Core values; Gifts and calling; Spiritual warfare; Essentials in the Christian faith; Relationships; Beyond the stereotypes of womanhood.Each book has seven sessions, each with two levels of Bible study and discussion. You can aim at seekers or beginners, or try the advanced level for those wanting more depth.

 
Each session starts with Gathering, to break the ice and introduce the topic.
The Bible Study encourages each member to explore the meaning of passages for themselves.
In the concluding Caring Time, members of the group decide what action they need to take and support one another in that action.

 

A multi-choice approach is often used to get discussion going. New Zealanders will need to think of New Zealand images to replace the American bias in some of the studies. Another NZ approach will be to subvert the process so that there’s a bit more variety in conversation starters.

Check out Serendipity House’s new website, with more resources for small groups, athttp://www.serendipityhouse.com/

The focus series is available for order in most NZ Christian bookstores for $14.95 (NZ)