Summers are for slowing down, dinners on a patio, and enjoying the people around us. But for Community Group, summers can be challenging. People go out of town on vacation. Or their schedules change for the season because kids are out of school. That makes it hard for a group to meet consistently.
That lack of consistency can hurt the group momentum you’ve worked so hard throughout the year to create and sustain. Doing a study over the summer months is unrealistic for most groups, but staying connected is still important . . . and do-able.
So, what’s a leader to do?
Be intentional about switching your group into summer mode. For my groups, summer mode means putting aside studies and meeting socially once a month. If that's sounds like a good plan for your group, too, here's all you have to do:
- As you’re finishing up your last study, let your group know the plan for the summer.
- Pick a date for each month when everyone (or almost everyone) is in town. Go ahead and have the group put the dates on their calendars.
- If you lead a women’s or men’s group, pair people up and ask them to plan a specific social. If you lead a married group ask a different couple to plan each social. Letting group members plan socials not only gives you a break, it's a great way to Promote Participation.
Slowing down and having fun together during the summer months allows the group to connect in fresh and different ways. It gives you the leader a little time to recharge for the fall. And it prevents everyone from getting frustrated with the inevitable absences that occur if you meet weekly during the summer.
Don’t fight the natural rhythm of summer. Lean into the slower pace of the season. Use it to the benefit your group. When summer mode comes to an end, your group will still feel connected. Plus, you'll all be re-energized and eager to kick off your group in the fall.