What a difference a week makes…the world is looking for hope and we have an unprecedented opportunity to provide it. Your small group is now more important than ever. By keeping your members connected you can offer the care, support, and community that everyone needs, especially right now. Of course, we’ll need to adjust the way that we stay connected as conditions change. Our team is doing our best to make sure you have the best next steps and resources to successfully move your small group online during this season. Let's get started!
How should our group meet?
Be sensitive to the concerns of your small group members. Everyone is reacting a little differently to the circumstances, so make sure your group members are comfortable with whatever you decide to do. What’s most important is to stay connected with everyone throughout the week.
How can we take our small group online for this season?
1. Pick a platform
- Video meeting Zoom (contact Jim Flood firstname.lastname@example.org if you choose zoom), Google Hangouts, Skype, FaceTime, or Facebook Video Chat by Messenger
- Audio only: Zoom, Skype, FaceTime, Facebook Messenger, or group phone call
2. Decide on the curriculum
- We encourage your group to use our Sunday Sermon Discussion Guide created specifically for small groups.
You can find the guide each week on the Brandywine App. The guide is located after the sermon notes.
3. Understand how a normal group time will look online
- Welcome everyone. People will be late online, just as your in-person group, so build in some buffer time to catch up.
- Warm up the group by getting people to use the “Mute" and “Unmute" button. Ask an icebreaker question and allow everyone to answer.
- Pick out some discussion questions to do together
- Share prayer requests and be ready to pause on someone going through a tough season.
- Don’t rush through this time together online.
- End the video meeting with prayer.
4. General tech tips for a smooth online small group
- Have the primary light in your house shining onto your face (sunlight from a window or lamp) and not behind you.
- If the light is in the background your camera will struggle to display your face. Think about where is the best lighting location at the specific time your group meets and test the spot out.
- Select the quietest place in your house (avoid turning your dishwasher or washer/dryer on right before group time).
- Make sure your camera on your laptop is angled correctly. Use a box nearby to elevate and level your camera on your laptop.
- Login to your meeting software to change default mic and camera (Preferences or Settings depending on the platform).
- Knowing how to adjust mic/camera will save you from awkward pauses + you can help other group members out as well.
- Figure out how to use mute & unmute. The creator of the meeting can mute/unmute any participant, which is helpful to know upfront.
- Recommend group members to download meeting software prior to the meeting and give it a test run.
- Most platforms have a mobile app or desktop software, which is easy to install but does take time depending on internet speeds.
Your group IS the church—on behalf of Pastor Mark and all our church staff we are praying for you and appreciate all you do for the Body of Christ at Brandywine!