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Small Group Ministry (SGM) with families connects participants across the
generations in a ministry that enhances spiritual life journeys and empowers a
family’s connections and its connection with the congregation. The contexts,
within the family setting at home or among families within a congregational
setting, and components of Small Group Ministry hold great promise for Unitarian Universalist (UU)
families. The opportunities for intergenerational learning and celebration are
great, but there are also challenges to address.
While Small Group Ministry with families will look and work differently than
other SGM models or covenant groups, the basic underlying concepts are the same.
The concepts underlying intergenerational Small Group Ministry are:
Some of the characteristics of Small Group Ministry—such as size, frequency
of meeting, format, facilitators, empty chair, covenant, connection with
congregation, support system for development and maintenance of program, and
service to congregation or larger community—define Small Group Ministry with
families, but we also need to pay attention to the differences. Some of these
*For a more detailed overview of Small Group Ministry read The Complete
Guide to Small Group Ministry: Saving the World Ten at a Time by the
Reveverend Robert Hill. Two resources in this product—Religious Education
and Small Group Ministry: One Congregation’s Plan by Gail Forsythe-Vail and
Small Group Ministry and Relational Religious Education by Helen
Zidowecki—explore the dimensions of intergenerating Religious Education and
Small Group Ministry.
The Birth Order Difference session is an example of Small Group Ministry with families
that you are invited to use as a springboard for developing your own sessions
for families in your congregation.
For more information contact web @ uua.org.
This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations.
Please consider making a donation today.
Last updated on Wednesday, October 26, 2011.
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