Faith Mennonite Church, MInneapolis
During 2016-2017 the Deacon Commission at Faith Mennonite Church in Minneapolis invited persons in the congregation to join in triads for spiritual support and growth. Ten triads were formed. Suggestions were provided for helping guide the experience, but each triad determined how often to meet and how they would structure their time together. Some met weekly; others bi-weekly or monthly. Here are comments received from those who participated:
"I felt more connected to the community; this was all new to me."
"The triad meetings were a time to deliberately talk about our faith/spiritual lives - or lack thereof - in an intentional way. The triad meetings deepened our faith lives. We shared our individual faith stories, and spent much of our subsequent meetings talking about prayer: what, how, why. We sometimes prayed for each other or concerns we brought to the group. We agreed that the triad struck a nice balance between checking in and getting to know each other AND focusing specifically on our individual/shared spiritual lives."
"Our triad usually read a scripture passage together and we often doodled with colored pencils as we talked. We always ended in prayer for one another and concerns for the world. We met by Skype when one of our group was in Tanzania for work. This felt like a life-line for all of us!"
Here is the handout that people received to guide their groups:
Triads for Spiritual Growth and Deepened Relationships
Each triad will decide how often to meet: This might be one-hour weekly meetings or longer bi-weekly or monthly meetings. Each triad may choose from among the following ideas, using one or a combination, or following an agenda of their own. We encourage each triad meeting to include a time of prayer for one another.
- Initially, take turns sharing your life/spiritual autobiography (perhaps one person per meeting).
- Using the “Love is a Verb” study guide, share insights from the weekly readings and exercises.
- Answer the following questions:
- How have you experienced God’s love or seen God’s work since our last meeting?
- What have you heard God speaking in scripture?
- What is your greatest joy at the moment?
- What challenge are you facing that you would like us to pray about?
- 20-20-20 gathering:
- Take turns reading the Bible out loud together for 20 minutes.
- Spend 20 minutes quietly journaling (or drawing) about the reading.
- Take 20 minutes to share reflections and pray together.