A group can be started in any community and in a variety of venues. There are groups in churches, community buildings, homes, social clubs and pubs. Groups consist of small groups starting with three people and larger classes of 60-plus. Groups can be part of a local church.

The six steps to starting a class:

1. Form a team

CBS is a Team Ministry. Whether you are in a Church, or just two or three Christians wanting to impact your community, a team of two, preferably three or more is essential.

2. Choose a Study

You may like to start with our God’s Amazing Book material which is easy to use and easy for people who have no experience of Bible study and comes with videos to help you. This seven-lesson course is offered free of charge and you can register for this material here. On completion of this study full training and support is offered before you start a group.

3. Start your study

Identify someone who will facilitate the start-up procedure. We recommend a time of prayer to start with and then a discussion leader should facilitate, making sure all questions are covered and that no one person dominates, but all are included. Timing is important. The discussion can take between 40 minutes and an hour. A member of the group will be asked to provide a wrap-up talk if you are not using the God’s Amazing Book material which has its own videos. This should be a prepared ‘thought’, which will relate to the study and have a practical application.

4. Organisation

Decide on roles for the leadership team (see 5). Decide on a venue and time to meet;  people should feel comfortable, confident and cared for. Decide on a study from the CBS study list and publicise using our ready-prepared material.

5. Training

We offer training for the various roles involved. When possible a CBS class is supported by a Group Leader, and a Discussion Group Leader. For larger groups, there are also a Coordinator (Administrator) Prayer Coordinators and other assistants. Training is given in these specific roles; the background and structure to CBS is covered as well as group dynamics, administration and how to prepare a talk. You will need more Discussion Group Leaders as the group grows, and the Class Leader will train them.

6. The first day of your class

This is usually an introductory session rather than a formal study time. Use an ice-breaker to get to know people. Ask participants about themselves. Register contact details. Introduce the study and explain how the system works. Give a background introductory talk about the subject being studied.

If you are interested in starting a group or would like further information about Community Bible Study please contact: Antti Ronkainen, Regional Director – Europe antti.ronkainen@communitybiblestudy.org