As a church, Shades exists to send transformed people to influence their world for Christ. We believe small groups offer a vital place where transformation happens. DGroups provide intentional structure for transformational discipleship where we engage in gospel dialogue, transparent friendships, and seeking the lost. If you’ve stumbled upon this page and are interested in joining a DGroup, feel free to browse the FAQs. If you are leading or participating in a group, you will find all the resources you need in the links and FAQs.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Anyone who has previously participated in a DGroup.
Anyone who has made a profession of faith in Jesus.
In short, no. Groups are closed for the sake of continuity, progression, and goal toward replication. The new believers class is formatted in a way that you are encouraged to attend with them, and then encourage them to go to your Sunday School class with you after the 6 weeks. They would be able to join a DGroup at the next entry point.
This varies by group. Most join through connection to someone who has participated in a DGroup and is recruiting for a future DGroup. Others join by expressing interest online, and then being connected to those who are recruiting for future DGroups. Only those who have previously participated in a DGroup can facilitate a DGroup.
Each fall (September) and spring (February).
Those wanting to participate in a DGroup before launch dates can get involved in a Women’s Ministry Table Group or in a Men of Shades Bible Study as bridge to DGroup participation.
Replication is explained as the end goal of the group from the outset. Participants will grow in spiritual maturity (transformation) through the process and some who were unlikely to facilitate their own group at the beginning will be ready by the end. Others may choose to participate in another DGroup with a different facilitator at a later date, but the end goal is always every disciple making disciples.
In short, yes. Anyone at Shades has the liberty to create and participate in any small group discipleship structure that they choose, but the DGroup structure and content is what we are endorsing church-wide. We offer continued training, support, and oversight of those who are a part of the DGroup structure.
Ideally, groups meet away from the church campus - in a home or a public place with little distraction - but we know that's not always possible if you are a parent. Childcare is available for DGroup meetings on Sunday and Wednesday nights at 6pm, and Thursday mornings at 10am. Group participants who utilize childcare must meet on campus. Childcare reservations must be made in advance by emailing email@example.com.
No. DGroups are designed to function in companion to Sunday School. Goals for each venue are distinct.
The transparent friendship in a DGroup context will involve intimate vulnerability, confession, and an element of accountability. This is best done in gender divided groups. Those wanting to be connected to a group with their spouse or those of opposite gender will find that within the Sunday School context.