Learning some basic information when new small groups start can save misunderstanding later. Asking participants to answer a few basic questions the first day can help leaders structure the time to better meet the needs of a group. Here’s an example “Small Group Welcome” survey.
When starting new small groups, it’s helpful to establish expectations up front with a clear set of ground rules. Here’s a sample we’ve developed over 25 years of ministry.
July is the time to start preparing for your fall Bible study. Are you overwhelmed by the details or don’t know where to start? Assuming your study starts in September, here’s my summer ministry preparation checklist.
It’s always helpful to get feedback from your students at the end of a Bible study year. But evaluations can be a problem. If they are too short, your leaders don’t gain any useful information. If they are too long, few students will not fill them out. Here’s an example we’ve used at Wednesday in the Word that seems to find the right balance.
Church women’s retreats offer one of the best opportunities of the church for women to step away from their daily responsibilities, rest and connect with other women in the church and spend some concentrated time learning more about the Lord. While retreats require a lot of planning, they are worth it in the long run.
Runaway announcements seems to be a particular problem of running a women’s ministry. How do you handle it? What kind of limits should you put in place? After 25 years, in women’s ministry, here’s the policy I’ve found best.
Registration is a chance to collect valuable information about your participants that can help you build small groups, evaluate the success of your program and plan for the future. Here are some questions you might want to include on your registration forms.
What is Lent? Is it an official Christian holiday? Was it instituted in the Bible? What — if anything — is required of believers during Lent?
The prevailing belief of the world is that “You go around once and then you die.” Yet, the remarkable claim of the Christian faith is that those who have died are more alive today than they were before their deaths. “If I die and go to heaven, what is it going to be like?” “Someone close to me died, where do I turn for comfort?” “If I die, will I go to a better place?” Professor Ken Elzinga answers these questions.
About this series: Many years ago, we asked the matriarchs in our church to share “pearls of wisdom” they learned over the course of their walk with the Lord. We collected their stories in a booklet which we distributed through the women’s ministries. My copy of the booklet is now tattered and faded, and many of the women quoted are home with the Lord. To keep their words alive and honor their wisdom, I am sharing their pearls here before my booklet turns to dust. I hope these words inspire you to share a cup of tea with an older woman in your church and listen to her pearls of wisdom.