Phone: (225) 926.2291 8470 Goodwood Blvd., Baton Rouge, LA 70806
You are here
"Branches" Covenant Groups: UCBR Small Group Ministry
A Branches group provides a structure within which participants minister to each other. The subject matter of the group is the participants' lives. Intimacy and Ultimacy are the goals. Group members listen to each other, but do not attempt to solve each other's problems. These are not therapy or encounter groups. The groups are part of a religious community , the Church. Most groups usher about one month per year. Some groups choose to take on other service projects for the church or the larger community.
There are currently 24 Branches groups, with over 250 participants, including 44 Branches leaders. The program began in 1999.
Anyone who is a graduate of the Unitarian Church Roots orientation class or is a member of the church may join a Branches group. To request to join a group, sign up at the Book Table any Sunday, call the church office, 926-2291, or email Suzanne Besse at firstname.lastname@example.org
Basic Structure of a Branches Meeting
Branches groups have approximately 8 to 12 members and are led by lay people. Usually, there are two co-leaders. They meet monthly in private homes. Members may invite the group to meet in their home, or not. Meetings last two hours, including the refreshment period.
Expectations of a Branches Participant
- To commit to a year of participation
- To give attendance at Branches meetings a high priority
- To commit to listening to other group members.
- To help write a covenant for the group or to participate in a review of the groups existing covenant, if the new member is joining an ongoing group.
- To give church attendance a high priority.
- To participate in a group service project to the church annually.
The facilitators of our groups are usually experienced participants who volunteers to lead. Each leader is trained locally using Small Group Ministry materials gathered from across the nation. Sessions are chosen from the library of UU Small Group MInistry at http:www.smallgroupministry.net