Within a large congregation, the small group setting is a way for both new and long-term members to be a part of a smaller community and, hopefully, in the end, to feel more connected to the whole community. Small Group Ministry organizes intentional groups called “Sharing Circles” within our larger congregation that foster a sense of belonging, interpersonal relationships, intellectual growth and spiritual development bydeep sharing and listening.
How are groups structured?
Groups of six to ten members are formed according to mutual meeting time. Each group develops a covenant to guide how they are in relationship with each other. Meeting once or twice monthly, these groups are guided by a facilitator and a co-facilitator for 2-hour sessions in the homes of group members or at the UUFCC.
What is expected of participants?
Participants are expected to come with open minds, open hearts, and a willingness to take part in a service project for the fellowship or the greater community together with the group. We ask that members make a commitment to attend the meetings as often as possible.
What happens at a Small Group Ministry Meeting?
Group sessions follow a standard format. Example topics are spiritual practices and beliefs, fear, healing, laughter, mothers, fathers, joy, love and your bucket list to name a few.
Opening reading: To focus participants on the purpose of the gathering and often to reflect the topic of the evening. Groups will light a Chalice as well.
An opportunity for each member to share thoughts or feelings on his or her life.
A paragraph or two lays out a topic and presents questions that will elicit sharing and thoughtful discussion.
This brings the session to an end. Groups are encouraged to start and end on time.
How Does the Idea of Service Fit In?
We ask that every group take on some kind of service at the UUFCC or in the greater community. This might be maintaining a designated garden at UUFCC, lending a hand in the fellowship office, or helping a group such as CentrePeace, etc.
How Long Will I Be in a Small Group Ministry?
We ask new individuals to commit to attend for at least 6 months. Groups commit to meet for one year and then may switch to a different group or remain in the original sharing circle.
How Do I Join a Sharing Circle? or For Questions About Small Group Ministry, contact