Group Sessions

improve the ability to learn and promote spiritual and psychological well-being

Small groups are critical in growing faith, forming a community, and undergoing transformative change. Learning science also demonstrates that small groups can improve the ability to learn and promote spiritual and psychological well-being. Sharing thoughts and new ideas with a trusted group of peers help you refine your ideas. It also allows you to build confidence in the concept, and that confidence will help you lead others more effectively.

SHIFT small groups

Our small groups help pastors further hone their team-building skills, which results in better leadership. For example, these groups can help sharpen listening, supporting, and summarizing skills. The groups also will spark the pastor's imagination and reinvigorate them in their ministries.

Well-structured small groups have a positive energy that encourages the flow of ideas that build on each other. The groups stir excitement and passion so that pastors return to their ministry settings energized and ready to continue their bold work of spreading the Gospel.

Joining a SHIFT group also enables the pastor to build trusting relationships with colleagues. These relationships improve self-awareness while also benefiting the pastor emotionally. So often, pastors, especially those who are the only pastor in a church, experience a sense of isolation. They believe that their experiences are unique. They also sometimes feel misunderstood.

When they meet regularly with a small group, however, they realize that other ministers face similar challenges. They can reflect together on ways to solve these challenges and gain strength. Once they've built trust, they can share their feelings. They can also help each other understand their leadership strengths and growing edges.

The groups also help the pastor move toward their goal of becoming a fully self-differentiated leader. The group members and mentors help the pastor articulate their values and understand their feelings distinct from those of others. The groups can also encourage one another to set appropriate boundaries without feeling guilty and to practice good self-care.

How the group works

A mentor facilitates each group. In addition, group mentors will host two quarterly sessions based on the Program Outline's quarterly theme. The sessions take place on a virtual platform, and their purpose is to aid the pastor in reflection, learning, and creativity. During the sessions, the group mentors will present:

The pastors and their mentors will engage in dialogue and learning on the platform. They will also engage in breakout groups several times throughout the quarter to further hone their learning and spark creativity and reflection.

Responsibilities of group members

For the group to provide a transformational experience for all the group members, members should be committed to the group. Group members are responsible for attending all meetings of their small groups and breakout groups. They also should exhibit team-building behaviors. All group members should be: