Get Social & Build Momentum
In the past, the Sunday driven model has been the main strategy people are exposed to when they start a new church. Learning how to do ministry was based on Sunday gatherings.
We are learning that this doesn’t fully prepare people who are starting new churches for the depths of relational ministry. The problem with this model is that discipleship is not modeled well only on Sundays. At Stadia, we teach a simple rhythm of gatherings that helps you with a better place to start called, The M Rhythm.
The M Rhythm is a pattern of activity that creates space for discipling relationships to take place. This rhythm is helpful whether you are starting a micro church in your neighborhood, a digital church in the Metaverse, or a Phygital™ church in your city. Building momentum and having the goal of moving people into a discipling relationship with Jesus through the new body of the church can be achieved.For more about the M Rhythm check out this blog.
This month we’re showcasing Social Spaces, the next stop in the M Rhythm!
Social spaces typically take place with a group smaller than the previous, awareness space. These spaces provide an opportunity to get know each other and the church better. This is a place where personal stories are shared and friendships begin to develop.
Pastors Casey and Aimee Graves are starting The Refinery Church in Temecula, California, and have been in the pre-start phase for a year now. They’ve figured out their rhythms to connect with their community, and have some great examples of social spaces.
Check out this a story about how social spaces have helped Casey and Aimee build momentum with their community at The Refinery Church:
“Nicole and Jason represent many individuals and families in our valley that find themselves disconnected from a life giving church. They moved to the Temecula Valley because housing was more affordable and they wanted to give their future children a more traditional experience of family. We met Nicole and Jason this past Friday night at a monthly community event in Vail Headquarters, a courtyard surrounded by locally owned shops, restaurants, a brewery, and a coffee shop. They stopped by our pop-up tent to spin the prize wheel, where they were invited by one of our Launch Team members to come to our Interest Party on Sunday night (2 days later). After sending a “Nice to Meet You” email on Saturday morning and a “Reminder” text on Sunday, Nicole and Jason came to our Interest Party!
An Interest Party is our version of a monthly social space event where our goal is to help our interested guests make a relational connection with our Launch Team. We believe that if people feel seen, known and cared for, they are much more likely to join our Team. We eat together, we share the vision of our church, we sometimes pray and worship together, recognizing that not everyone in attendance is a follower of Jesus. We’ve done Interest Parties at coffee shops where we have live music and buy everyone’s coffee. We’ve done Interest Parties at local churches where we cater a meal so that we can slow down enough to get to know the “Nicole and Jason’s” of our community. We even rented a musical hall to host a night of worship where we had a pizza party afterwards. And because we live in an area with lots of children and families, we always provide a fun children’s activity as well. At the end of the event, we capture their information on an Interest Card so we know their level of interest in joining our Launch Team and can initiate our follow up process with them.
We use social media, community events, free donut days, neighborhood movie nights, and natural relationships to make people aware of The Refinery Church and invite them to our Interest Parties. Over the last 6 months, we’ve had people who are new to our community, people who are veterans in their faith, and people who are exploring Jesus, come-back to our Interest Parties and join our Launch Team. We’ve had 30 guests show up and we’ve had 4 guests show up. Not everyone who comes to these social space events join our Launch Team, but some people do. Nicole and Chris have joined our team!”
The importance of being consistent builds trust in the community. People are searching for safe, stable, and fun spaces to get know people others in the community. Creating this space will help build organic relationships that will gain the trust to share about the hope of Jesus. Let’s get social and have parties that our community will want to go to!
Mo Hofman has over 15 years’ experience in organizational planning, team development, and maximizing project goals, with 6+ years specifically in church planting, multisite, and church logistics. She loves the church and enjoys the behind the scenes work in sharing the gospel. In her spare time you will find her walking her dog Shadow, crocheting blankets, working out with friends, and on the field cheering for her kids at their sport events. Mo and Aaron have been married since 2001 and have two teenagers Maddie and Austin.