Basic idea? The largest circle represents the community you’re in. They are who you’re trying to reach. The crowd represents the group that considers your church to be their church. They may not come all the time, but if asked where they go to church they name your church. The congregation represents the group that are actually members of your church. They attend more frequently. Committed is a step towards greater commitment. They’re serving in some way. Core is the most committed bunch you’ve got. Serving. Giving. Leading in some way.
How does this play into small group ministry? Here are a just few ideas:
- Most churches are attempting a version of core to crowd small group ministry. By that I mean that in order to lead a group you’re recruited and selected for leadership training based on already being known and involved. Consequence? It severely impacts the ability of the group to reach and connect beyond the congregation.
- Since the community is more likely to walk across the cul-de-sac than come into your auditorium it makes sense to find ways to help them connect in community before they attend your service.
- The deeper a person’s commitment to your church (core and committed) the less likely they are to have deep friendships with people who are in the community. While there are exceptions, this is generally true. As a result, if the most likely accepted invitation to a small group is made by a friend, it makes sense to help your congregation and crowd invite the community.