Yesterday we talked through the logistics of retreat discussion groups.
Today we’re going to spend some time talking about your discussion group leaders.
I strongly recommend you recruit and train your discussion group before your retreat.
Your retreat planning team should have some recommendations for you.
Several of the women on your retreat planning team may need to serve as discussion group leaders. This is especially true if your church is smaller.
What to look for in a leader:
- Sensitive to the Holy Spirit
- Able to lead someone to Christ
- Good listener
Once you’ve prayerfully recruited your discussion group leaders, you’ll want to bring them all together before the retreat for some training and information sharing.
Training topics you may want to cover:
- How to get quiet women to speak up
- How to handle dominating group members
- Dealing with divisive topics (politics, breastfeeding, worship music, etc.)
- When to notify leadership (abusive situation, suicidal thoughts, etc.)
- Resources available for group leaders to use
- Expectations for the weekend
- Materials leaders will have to guide the discussion
- Group logistics – how many members, how many sessions, for how long, where their group will meet
If you are allowing your women to choose their groups each session, you need to make clear who your group leaders are.
Be sure to assign each group leaders a specific table or room for their group to meet in.
Make sure your discussion group leaders know who the other leaders are. You might even want to note it on their name tags.
Don’t forget to pray with and over your discussion group leaders. They will likely be a part of several intimate conversations over the weekend. Ask God to give them grace and discernment in all of their encounters with your women.