“All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s supper), and to prayer.” Acts 2:42 NLT
What Are Connect Groups?
Connect Groups are a gathering of 6-15 people who meet regularly for the purpose of fellowship, connection, and spiritual formation. These groups meet in homes, coffee shops, apartment buildings, online and anywhere people can gather. Connect Groups are designed to help each person grow in redwood faith with interconnected root systems. Most groups are “open” groups where first-time guests can be invited to any individual group session.
Each group has a leader (host) who leads the group. The host will work with the local pastor in planning for the group. The host will 1) use the sermon discussion guide or choose the curriculum 2) plan group calendar (time & location on group finder), 3) lead the group discussion, 4) record attendance & communicate needs to pastoral staff, and 5) raise up more group leaders.
We base our Connect Group Settings on the relational circles we see in the New Testament. Jesus formed a relational circle of 12 disciples in the Gospels (Luke 6:13). The church of Jerusalem in the Book of Acts met in relational circles from house-to-house (Acts 2:46).
Connect Groups include the following elements:
1. Biblical Teaching – Word-Centered study and discussion
2. Fellowship – Relational and interactive environment
3. Sharing In Meals – Snacks, Food, Breaking Bread and/or Meals
4. Prayer – Seeking God and praying for each other
What is taught at Connect Group?
Connect Groups use the Sermon Discussion Guide or a prepared study that is selected from a pre-approved list of options.
The Sermon Discussion Guide is available year-round. Prepared studies happen during one of our three group terms during the year (Fall, Winter and Summer).
Connect Group Calendar (Terms)
A typical Connect Group term varies from 8-12 weeks in length with 4-6 week planned breaks in between. The beginning of a session launch is the ideal time to begin a group.
WINTER – January 16, 2022- April 3, 2022
SPRING leadership term – April 24- May 15, 2022
SUMMER – June 19 – August 21, 2022
FALL – TBD
New Hosts can start a group during a church-wide campaign or grab a Connect Group in-a-box. (The Connect Group in-a-box includes a four-week starter study on “Redwood Faith.”)
Anyone can HOST a group if they have:
· Heart for people
· Open their home or space
· Serve a few snacks
· Turn on a video
· If they can gather 5 people
Next Steps for Hosts
➤ All Connect Group Hosts will need to take Growth Track in order to host a group (Hosts can attend simultaneously during campaigns).
➤ Connect Group Leader
➤ Leaders make a year long commitment, agree to leadership covenant, and pursue ongoing equipping.
➤ Connect Group Coach
➤ As your group multiples, become a coach and help equip your groups.