Small Group Ministry – Milestone Sessions
Milestone sessions mark the major milestones of a group.
Starting a new group
The four sessions to start a group are used to build a common foundation of story. The sessions introduce SGM and members will share some common stories. The intimacy and deepness of sharing increases as the sessions progress. Ideally, the group should meet weekly for four weeks then assume its normal schedule. These four sessions are:
If a group adds a member, use these two sessions to integrate the member into the group. These two sessions are a condensed version of the first four sessions. If possible add an extra meeting the month the group adds new members.
An alternative to the two sessions for adding a member is this one session
- M306 – Embracing New Members
When a member leaves a group, one of two situations arise. Either the group will have a chance to say goodbye in person or they won’t. In either case the group has changed. Sessions M19 and M25 are short rituals that can be used in addition to the regular session for the day. Choose one of the following rituals as appropriate.
When there is a change in leadership, this ritual is an add-on to the normal content of the day. It provides members of the group a way to honor the service of the leader who has stepped down.
- M113 A Leader Steps Down
This birthing ritual is to be used as the last session of a group before it grows to become two groups (births) or changes dramatically.
- M18 Birth or Metamorphosis
When a member of a group dies the group changes profoundly. The following ritual is a full two hour session to explore that change. This session is not a memorial service, that need will be fulfilled in the congregation as a whole.
- M103 Death of a Member
Strengthening the group and its processes
After a period of time, the group should reflect upon itself and its processes. The following session (full two hours) is part guided meditation, part sharing that will allow the group to look at itself in a constructive manner.
- M11 Circle as Container
Groups are strengthened by creating a covenant and a brand.
Celebrating Each Other gives each member a chance to show appreciation to each member of the group.
- M056 Celebrating Each Other
Rekindling the Small Group Flame focusses on the goals of Small Group Ministry.
- M284 Rekindling the Small Group Flame
Every year before open enrollment starts we ask members to reflect on whether this is a time to try a new group or recommit to their current group.
In the interest of promoting small group ministry, we invite — indeed encourage — you to use this copyrighted material in your congregation’s program. Please respect the copyright by using it for this purpose only. It may not be published or used in any sort of profit-making manner.
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