baking in the large group message (a fridea)

Last weekend, it was fun watching a handful of college ministers hear about small discussion groups meeting immediately after a (short) message at the Large Group Meeting. (One ministry brought it up within a discussion, because that’s what they do.) Though the other leaders hadn’t heard of a campus ministry using this structure before, it’s actually one of the fairly common small group options.

So that leads to this week’s Fridea.

Though your small group structure might not be built directly around discussing the content of the Large Group message, for many ministries it might be wise to establish some sort of “debrief” about the content of the Large Group message. For many college ministries, a lot of time and discernment goes into crafting a particularly strategic message. By reminding students and letting them chat, you “bake in” the truths you were hoping to share. (You might also catch some of the students who missed the Large Group Meeting this week.)

If you don’t have discussion groups that night, what can you do? Here are some possibilities:

In small groups

  • Have small groups discuss the message content instead of other curriculum
  • Have small groups chat for 10 minutes about the content, then move on to their usual curriculum
  • Have small groups work through content that “springboards” from the message (like diving more deeply into the book or topic, or letting leaders decide where their group needs to drill down after a particular message)

Other ways

  • Online – through some sort of forum, emails (though this may limit the actual discussion), or similar means
  • Offering an “elective” session over lunch (for instance) of another time for those who want to chat about it
  • Offering discussion that same night, for anyone who wants to stick around
  • Doing your “debrief” for the entire Large Group (ending your message with a Q&A session, sharing about application from students, or otherwise allowing for interaction)
  • Doing a catch-up/recall/debrief at the beginning of the following Large Group Meeting

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