Ministry And Small Groups
At Grace Covenant Church we are committed to being a small group church. Small groups are not merely one of many ministries at our church; it is a vital means by which we accomplish the ministry of the church. For hundreds of years Christians were not allowed to have the Word of God in their hands and in their own language. The Reformation of the 16th century brought a return of the Word of God to the people of God. What we are seeing in the modern church is a second reformation. We are seeing a return of the work of God into the hands of the people. Both the Word and work of God is not to be relegated to professionals, but it is to be in the possession of all God’s people. We believe that the work of God is done primarily through the people of God and this is done most effectively in small group venues.
Small group ministry is what the modern person needs. We have become a fractured and individualistic society. We have no commitments and have lost the great idea of God, and of meaning and value. Carl Wilson has said “The Church’s response to individualism may affect the way in which God enables the church to survive and have influence against this selfish, materialistic, over-entertained culture.” We believe the most effective response to modern meaninglessness is small group personalism. It is through small group ministry that we will best overcome the disease of Western cultures obsession with personal peace and affluence.
Small groups are not a new invention of modern churches, but a return to the old church. Jesus himself worked most closely with 12 disciples, entrusting the future of Christianity into the hands of this small group men. We read in Acts 2 that the early church met in the temple courts (large group) and in their homes (small groups). In Acts 4:4, 6:1, and 20:20 the early church spread from home to home, not big building to big building, or big stadium to big stadium. In fact there is as much stress on home ministry as there is on individual or one to one evangelism and discipleship. This vision of the early church motivates us and drives us.
It is only in the venue of small groups that one can use the gifts they have been given to minister to others and fulfill the one-another commands of Scripture. We have been called to pray for one another, love one another, bear one another’s burdens, etc. This cannot be done in a large group setting; hence it is imperative that the local church provide a place for this to occur. Grace Covenant Church begins its small group ministry each September and continues through May. In addition, we have ongoing leadership training. It is through the ministry of small groups that each person can do the works of ministry.
We offer different types of small groups: some are outreach or service oriented, others are study oriented, others are fellowship oriented; some meet every week for 10 weeks and others meet once or twice month. If you are interested in being a part of a small group please contact Adam Shields, 526-5577 or indicate on a visitor card. A small group brochure that lists all the small groups and contact numbers, can be found in the foyer.