Morning everyone! I hope this message finds each of you well and anticipating the celebration of the birth of Jesus.
Before I dive into a few things I wanted to remind everyone, so you can remind your groups, that there is still time to register for our upcoming Christmas services (we do registration so we can manage capacity). Registration is easy! Just go to www.christmasinkanata.ca and follow the prompts.
A few items for you to consider and be aware of as we approach 2020!
We are going to have an important small group leaders meeting after the 11 am service on February 9 from 12:15 - 2:00 pm. Please mark this in your calendar so that you can attend. I promise you it's not going to be one of those boring meetings! We will dream together of what could be and discuss some changes and improvements to small group ministry that will aim to provide you, as leaders, with increased support, clarity on your role and greater access to resources as you serve at The Bridge. Lunch will be provided free of cost.
We will be doing two "Group in a Box" campaigns in 2020. The expectation is that all groups will participate in these initiatives so I wanted to get the dates out to you now in order to equip you to plan your schedules effectively. More information on the series and when you can pick up the content will be available early 2020.
Ever feel like you wish you had more training on how to lead a small group? I know, when I first began to lead small groups, I had no idea what I was doing and wished I had access to content that would help me feel more confident.
Starting February 16 I will be teaching a new series at 11:00 am in Room 101 that aims to instruct, equip and empower people to lead small groups. Eventually these classes will be offered as a starting point for all new and/or interested leaders but I want to extend an invitation to all of you to attend if you feel that it is something that you would benefit from.
The classes will be from 11:00 - 12:00 pm for four consecutive weeks. We will be following adapted material from Leading Small Groups by Chris Surratt. Each participant will receive a free copy of his book with the requirement that they complete all four classes.
"Regardless of whether you have never lead a small group or have been leading one for years, all of us want to know how to create environments where spiritual growth takes place and communities are changed. Leading Small Groups walks the reader through the stages of gathering, launching, leading, and multiplying a gospel-centered small group. There are also follow-up questions for discussion and reflection at the end of each section, and practical resources that can be implemented immediately by the small group leader."
My arrival to the Bridge this year was the culmination of a two year conversation with Scott Landry, my wife, trusted friends and the Lord. I can honestly say that this community is where I belong and I am so excited to be a part of what God is doing here. Reflecting on all that has happened since September I am, quite honestly, blown away by what has been accomplished by this community.
As 2019 draws to an end I want to thank each one of you for your commitment and partnership to the mission of our church as expressed in Groups. Whether you have been leading for years or are new this year your contribution makes our dream of being a church OF small groups more of a reality than ever.
Thank you, as well, for your patience and perseverance with all of the changes in such a short time: launching our "Group in a Box" campaign, adopting a new church management system, and wrestling with best practices for equipping and enabling leaders. I am excited for what God is going to do in 2020.
Merry Christmas and a happy New Year to each of you.
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