The Blessings of a Small Group

My husband and I joined CUMC about 30 years ago, and like many parents of young children, our motivation was about them. Both of us had grown up in a church environment, and we just figured we needed to start getting our children involved. Little did I know that I was beginning a journey for myself—a journey that drew me towards a real and meaningful relationship with God, a journey that continues today.

Like many parents of young children, we immediately got involved with the church—teaching Sunday School, and participating in Vacation Bible School and preschool—but I began to feel that something was missing. I didn’t know what I was looking for, so I truly think that God led me to seek out a small group. Anne Dooley helped us to connect with an existing sharing group, and fortunately they were open to letting us into their established group, and I thank God every day for that. I was seeking connection, and through this group, we did feel connected. Also, through the various studies we did together, our faith grew and so not only were we relating to friends, but we were relating to God in a more meaningful way. What a gift!

With the help of this group, I learned that knowing God takes work—but when you are in fellowship, it really doesn’t feel like work. The love we feel for each other mirrors the love that God feels for us. I learned about sharing, acceptance, and growth. Of course I am still learning—are we ever finished learning?—but I am so happy that I am learning with my friends, who know and love me.

Due to my positive experience with my sharing group, I made the decision to participate in other small groups—Bible study being the most important. I remember taking Disciple 1 with Lillian Sharp, my first experience with learning about the wisdom of the Bible. Wow!! With each group, I became close to the members, and through those relationships and a growing understanding of the wisdom of the Word, my love for God and my desire for a personal meaningful relationship with Him keeps getting stronger.

Am I still with my sharing group? Absolutely! Most of the original members are still with us, and we have added others—each one a blessing. I want to take this opportunity to thank each person in my sharing group for all that you have done for me. My Church, my Faith, and my Love for God are all connected to you. Thank you.

Interested in becoming part of a small group or Bible study at Christ Church? Want to learn more about what we have to offer? Join us on Sunday, September 9, for Start Up Sunday. In addition to worship, we’ll have food and entertainment, a special Sunday school session for adults, a Connect Fair where you can learn about all the exciting things going on this fall, and more! View all details at

—Connie Leonard