Question: Are Small Groups Good for small Churches?

If you are in the process of developing a plan to grow your church… starting “small groups” can be both a detriment and a disadvantage to growing churches under 150 members.

Let’s look at why.

  1. Small groups are not consistent with “Activating” your members. “Activation” is the process whereby you unite the members for greater fellowship “and greater relationship building BEFORE including Visitors as part of your membership. (Of course, some visitors will hopefully be coming to church prior to Activation.) When you are trying to activate the members, this means “all members” working together to create a “family”. When we follow ACTS 2:42-47, you will quickly realize that all the members were together. So, to be more specific, when a small church has small groups, it becomes extremely hard to engage the membership “activation” process to grow a church. “Activation” is one of the pillars to growing a church.
  2. During the activation process members become united (as never before), get used to working together, having fun together, deciding how and which part of the growth plan will be best for their individual skills and talents. Perhaps you think that is what you are currently doing, however, once you understand the membership “activation” process you will gain an in-depth understanding of why membership “activation” is important to church growth.
  3. Visitors should NOT be put into small groups! Why? First of all, it segregates them, because being in a small group, seriously limits their ability to become actively involved with other members, many of whom the visitor may form lifelong relationships. Just think about it, a visitors who is limited by the relationships in one group, miss out in getting to know other members throughout the entire church.

In general, when a smaller church commits to small groups, this is what happens:

  1. The church’s ability to grow is limited.
  2. The Visitor’s opportunities to participate in the life of the “entire” church is limited.

Yes, there is more to the “small group” concept than meets the eye. Greater Harvest Ministries can show you the best process for growing with under 200 members.

…and that’s that!

God Bless,
Rev. Dr. Beverly Tillman