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Pass the SALT - Issue #133

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How do we invite people to become small-group leaders? How do we help small-group leaders become more effective? These are common questions for congregations seeking to grow their small-group ministries.

In Keller, Texas, First United Methodist Church is answering these questions with a little SALT -- Serving Adults Learning Together.

SALT began as a way to enhance the congregation's current small-group ministry, to create new opportunities for small groups, and to equip small-group leaders for leadership. SALT participants meet for an hour each Sunday morning for four months to explore:

  • Bible study
  • Bible basics
  • United Methodist basics
  • Adult faith development
  • Curriculum.

In addition to the weekly meetings, participants complete homework assignments. Homework includes assignments such as exploring other church websites to see what small-group ministries they offer or attending workshops on intentional discipleship with adults.

SALT provides a setting for leaders to discuss the importance of small groups, learn skills in leading small groups, identify needs, and find encouragement for becoming a small-group leader. Participants do not have to commit to being a small-group leader prior to their participation in SALT. Their four-month commitment to SALT is an invitation to explore the possibilities.

Some Questions for Discussion

  • How does your congregation equip and support small-group leaders?

  • What are the basics that every small-group leader needs to know in order to be an effective leader in your congregation?

  • What opportunities are available for people to explore possibilities for ministry in your congregation?

  • What constraints would you face in implementing an intentional support system for equipping potential leaders? What would need to happen to eliminate the constraints?

Carol F. Krau is the Director of Adult Formation and Discipleship at the Discipleship Ministries. She can be reached at [email protected].

In 2007 church leaders throughout The United Methodist Church in the U.S. were invited to identify churches that demonstrated the vision of discipleship described in the twelfth chapter of Romans. Over 200 churches were surveyed or visited. Issue #133. © 2012 Discipleship Ministries. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to copy this page for use in United Methodist congregations.