FAQ's for Small Groups

Check out some of these frequently asked questions concerning small groups.

by Cindy Scott on September 03, 2019

What types of Small Groups are offered at Worship Center? 

There are three types of groups where people can connect and grow:

Community Groups: These message-based discussion groups focus on the sermon series topic as members share and do life together. This is our primary discipleship pathway.

Focus Groups: These groups meet people where they are in certain stages of life. They meet for a season and then transition to a Community Group.

Support & Recovery Groups: These groups provide a safe place to process the storms of life. Most meet for a season and then transition to Community Groups as well.

What are message-based groups?

Community groups spend a portion of time on discussing the content of the message presented in the service. We believe discussion leads to discovery, discovery highlights decisions, and decisions determine destiny.

Why are message-based Community Groups the primary discipleship pathway?

Message-based discussion groups offer spiritual growth based on these three values:

Personal Engagement: Discerning how to apply God's Word in our lives is a life-long journey that happens best through discussion. Each week's message has Discuss Questions that lead to Engage Questions offering personal applications from the message. Going through the Engage questions changes the discussion and leads to transformation. (James 1:22-25).

Corporate Unity: Intentionally honoring the series topic discerned by the leadership means we are all talking about and walking out the implications of the current series. This unified focus keeps us all on the same page while allowing the Holy Spirit to direct each group's conversation (John 17:23).

Connected Belonging: Intentionally connecting in smaller groups is where we find our place to belong. Doing life together keeps us from isolation and builds healthy relationships. Connecting in groups is where we live out the 4 Cs (Matthew 18:2).

What are the 4 Cs?

Connect: Building authentic, committed relationships and creating a "home" environment for the group (Hebrews 10:25).

Care: Carrying and sharing the needs of the individuals in all areas of their life: body, spirit, soul, and mind (1 John 3:18-19).

Challenge to Grow: Walking with people as they grow in their relationship with Jesus (Hebrews 10:24).

Celebrate: Providing a place for people to celebrate the joys of life together (John 12:15a).

Why does Worship Center promote message-based groups rather than DVD or book studies?

The core of small groups is that participants connect, care, challenge each other to grow, and celebrate one another (the 4 Cs of group). The discussion content is the primary vehicle for that journey.

There are multiple benefits of the message-based group system:

1. The message-based group system allows our pastors to provide questions and reflections on the messages for group discussion. It also gives them an opportunity to regularly present what small groups are doing collectively during service times. 

2. The message-based system allows groups to start and stop on the same schedule. This schedule provides multiple, consistent sign-up opportunities, as well as shepherding people who would like to switch groups. 

3. In the message-based system, groups are a part of what the Holy Spirit is doing in and through Worship Center. Our pastors listen to what the Holy Spirit lays on their hearts and prepare messages that bring wisdom and growth to our congregation. Message-based groups study and unpack those messages throughout the week.

4. Coordinating groups topically and in our schedule allows for new people to get involved in groups easily. Trying to manage many groups with different lengths and varying topics could be overwhelming to facilitate, overwhelming to choose from, and difficult to review.

Do we offer groups in Spanish? Ofrecemos grupos en Español?

Yes. We offer community groups and Inner Healing Classes in Spanish

Si. Ofrecemos grupos de comunidad y classes de Sanidad Interior en Español. 

When are the groups seasons?

In the fall, the groups season starts in mid-September and goes through Thanksgiving. Then the next season starts in early February and goes until the week before Memorial day.

How often do groups usually meet?

Most groups meet weekly during the season; however, some groups meet bi-weekly and/or year-round. The Group Finder descriptions define each group's meeting rhythm. 

Why are there questions available in between the groups seasons?

Questions are available in between seasons for these three reasons:

  • Couples, families, or other smaller groups often do the questions together even though they may not be in a small group together.
  • Individuals use the questions devotionally to connect their corporate worship experience with their weekday life.
  • Some groups meet year-round.

How long do groups stay together?

Each season individuals have the opportunity to remain in their existing group or try out a different one. Each year groups will be asked to discern if they should continue as they are, multiply into two or more groups, or morph in some other way.

How do we get message-based material? 

Discussion Questions are printed on the back of the sermon notes available at every entrance to the auditorium. They are also attached to the message notes on the Worship Center app, and available with the message notes online. 

Can message-based groups work for people who do not attend a service? 

They can. Group members can watch or listen to the message prior to group if they miss a message, or the discussion questions can spark conversation without even watching the message.

Can we ever talk about subjects not covered in a message series (parenting, marriage, dating, evangelism, healing, serving, etc.)? 

Yes. While group content centers on the Sunday service message, the intent for the group is to talk about how it applies in life. This provides great opportunities to apply biblical principles to our marriages, parenting, budgets, dating, etc.

How do people join a group?

There are several ways for people to join a group. The most common is just prior to a groups season when new groups are open to be filled, and existing groups list their openings for additional members. Two or three Sundays before each groups season starts, interested people can sign up for groups online using the Group Finder, in person on a Sunday, or by contacting the church ( ).

Some groups remain open to new members throughout the year, and remain listed on the Group Finder. Other groups launch from Support & Recovery or Focus Groups with participants that have built relationships during the season. And finally, interested parties can launch their own groups after attending Count Me In and a GroupLaunch.

What if someone wants to try a different group?

People sometimes try different groups before they find one with the "right fit." If someone wants a switch within the first two weeks of a group starting and there is another group that they are interested in, we can easily make that change. 

What does group leader training look like?  

New group leaders will be instructed in the basics of facilitating discussion questions, and ongoing training is offered regularly. Every group leader is encouraged to go through Coach Training.

What is Coaching?

Coaching is a culture of honoring free will and trusting that the Holy Spirit wants a relationship with each individual. In the Coaching Culture, leaders learn to help people move forward by asking them empowering questions rather than telling others what they should do with their lives.  

Coaching helps people move from where they are to where God is leading them through active listening, support, encouragement, and accountability. Coaching is another word for biblical discipleship.

What kind of support will group leaders have?

Small Group Leaders will be assigned a Small Groups Team Leader, who they can check-in with if they have any additional questions or concerns. Team Leaders will regularly check in with their Small Group Leaders but are also available for questions or to talk through concerns as needed.

What is the "Big Three" email?

Small Group Leaders receive tips on group leadership and small group news via a monthly email written by the Groups Director and forwarded to them by their Team leader. This is another point of connection for Team Leaders and group leaders.

How are the group's descriptors chosen?

Each group leader is given choices about the characteristics their group wants to include. The choices include age-specific or age inclusive, mixed gender or single-gender, married, single or combined. We want to offer a variety of options as much as people are looking for options in their groups. 

What are other benefits of message-based discussion groups as the primary community group focus?

  • Groups are able to multiply more easily since all groups are processing the message in the same way.
  •  Small Groups is our primary discipleship tool. 
  • Team Leaders can focus on developing leaders who can multiply groups easily.

Where can I find more information about Focus Groups or Support & Recovery Groups?

Current Focus groups, as well as Support & Recovery groups, can be found at worshipcenter.org/groupfinder or by stopping in at Connections after services.

Tags: groups, small groups, leaders, community groups

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