Expect classes to meet for a study, and small groups to stay together long-term. Small groups and classes are both great opportunities to grow in your faith, make connections with others in the church and learn something new. Classes typically stay together just for a study (an average of six weeks at a time) while groups tend to stay together for the whole school year (September – May). Pick whatever time and commitment works for you – you’ll have a great experience either way!
Expect to know you’re not alone – nobody’s perfect! When you join a small group or class, you do not have to feel like the “expert” or a “perfect Christian.” There is no required or recommended level of knowledge needed before jumping in! The purpose of these groups are to connect with others in different ages and stages so we can all learn. This virtue holds true all the way from the youngest person to the oldest, and even to the facilitator!
Expect to find a space where you can be yourself. When you try something new, you’re worried about what to expect: the dress code, the depth of study, the group dynamics. Our philosophy that the best approach is to just be you! Come as you are, ready to connect with people just as they are.
Expect that small groups and classes will be a place for confidentiality. In all of our small groups and classes, getting everyone on the same page at the beginning is critical. We seek to create places that are warm-hearted and open-minded and that maintain the utmost confidentiality. Don’t be afraid of saying the “wrong” answer or being the subject of gossip – all perspectives are welcome and what the group says stays within the group!
Expect to get back what you put into your group. As with everything in life, you will get into small groups and classes what you put into them. With that being said, you are encouraged to jump in head first! Do the weekly reading, engage in the weekly sessions and boldly ask questions. When you are “all-in” in a small group or class, you are not only helping yourself learn, you are helping your fellow group members learn, too!
Have more questions about small groups are classes? Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Adapted from Christianity Today article