With the relaxed pace of summer days behind us, many church activities are ramping up again, including small groups. In what is often described as the "heart" of ministry, small groups (also called home groups, or home churches) are the context in which community relationships develop, faith deepens, and spiritual lives are enriched. In fact, small groups are such a key part of community life that many churches will look at the percentage of their congregation involved in a small group to gauge the health and well-being of their community. Keeping track of all the people and groups can require a significant amount of administration though. Thankfully, Sunergo has developed a set of tools built specifically to help churches organize their small groups, among other church management needs.
Inviting People to Join a Small Group
Through Sunergo’s contact management system, the church can send out emails easily and efficiently. Whether you want to address the entire community, those who were part of small groups last year, those who are not currently in a small group, or those who have never been in a small group, Sunergo’s contact management system can help you quickly connect with those you want to reach.
If you have a Sunergo Website, you can create an advanced form to collect information from people who want to sign-up for a small group and send these form submissions to your small group coordinator. Alternately, you can create multiple forms if you want the forms to go directly to each small group leader. All the form responses are saved to your website back office, for a convenient place to store these responses.
Organizing Small Groups
Sunergo Connect is a centralized place where small group members can connect with each other, especially since not everyone uses the same social media platforms. On Sunergo Connect, each group has their own private page where members can post announcements, updates, and prayer requests, and other members can respond through comments. Members can also share resources on the resources tab, such as Bible study material, links to videos, documents, PDFs, or reading plans. Members have the option to add titles and descriptions to the resources, as well as set them to “private” so that only the group leaders can view it. Sunergo Connect gives members an easy way to email all group members, as well as schedule volunteers, such as who will be hosting, providing snacks, leading music, or facilitating discussion.
Managing Different Types of Groups
There are no limits on how many groups a church can create in Sunergo. Within group categories, you can create sub-groups. For example, you might have the categories of small groups and worship teams, and then create sub-groups for the various small groups and worship teams. Sunergo allows you to see at a glance how many groups you have in the various ministries. When a member logs into Sunergo Connect, they will see relevant content from all the groups they are part of, whether it’s a small group, worship team, welcome team, or another group.
Churches use Sunergo to organize a broad range of groups including:
- AA Groups
- Counselling Groups
- Small Groups / Home Groups
- Bible Studies
- Sunday School
- Worship Teams
- Missions & Outreach Team
- Women’s Ministries
- Men’s Ministries
- Nursery Teams
Supporting Small Group Leaders
For small group leaders, Sunergo offers specialized tools such as adding new members to the group and sending them a username and password, removing members from a group, taking attendance, and assigning multiple people as group leaders. For groups requiring high confidentiality (eg. a counselling group), group leaders can remove the ability for group members to see who else is in the group, or the ability to connect with other members of the group.
A group can also be set up for group leaders specifically where they can connect with each other, ask questions, and receive support. Pastors can also share upcoming sermon series, plans, and announcements quickly and easily here.
Small Group Statistics
Sunergo Connect offers a centralized place to see how many groups there are, along with how many members are in each group. Meeting times can also be tracked and added to the church calendar. Pastors and staff can find valuable information for each member, including which groups they are part of and their attendance in those groups.
Small groups are an integral and vital part to the flourishing of community and Sunergo’s tools can simplify the organizing and running of them. Sunergo is a non-profit society registered in BC and has developed a comprehensive set of web-based tools to serve Canadian churches. For more information or to schedule a demo to see this tool in action and have your questions answered by a team member, visit our website.