September 13, 2013

Religious Education Supplement

Tips for parish small groups

For more information on parish small groups in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis, log on to www.archindy.org/faithformation/groups.html.
 

Focusing on faith

A parish pastoral council, finance commission or pro-life committee can grow the faith of its members when:

  • Its members commit to praying daily for the group’s work and all who are involved with it.
  • Each meeting of the group starts with 10-15 minutes of the members talking about the fruit of their prayer and daily life of faith.
  • Members of the group are encouraged to join an additional group in the parish more focused on growing in love of God and neighbor.
     

Starting off on the right foot

When considering to form a new small group in a parish, consider the following pointers:

  • Potential leaders should be enthusiastic about the Catholic faith, able to share it well, listen attentively and facilitate discussions effectively.
  • Recognize that many discussions in small groups are not debates, but a chance for members to reflect on how God is present in their lives.
  • Pursue the possibility of having different group members facilitate meetings once the group is working well.
     

There’s always room for improvement

Well-established parish small groups can always get better at what they do. Here are a few ways that this can happen:

  • Group members should occasionally touch base with the pastor to see how the group is nurturing the faith of its members.
  • Leaders of established groups mentoring leaders of new ones can be renewed in their role as a leader.
  • When questions are asked about a Church teaching, leaders should rely on the United States Catholic Catechism for Adults and consult with the pastor as needed.

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