The Basics is a series of three sessions to help introduce guests to the New Apostolic Church. After a person has been coming to the Church for a few services, they may show an interest in learning more about what we believe. Each of the three sessions in The Basics covers different topics that help people understand the essential elements of our Church.
Session 1 covers the Trinity, the Bible, the Gospel, and the Apostles’ Creed. Session 2 focuses on the church of Christ, the sacraments, and the Vision and Mission of the New Apostolic Church. Session 3 dives into what it means to be a thriving member of the Church, using the acronym THRIVE (seen in the THRIVE Membership Booklet) as a guide.
Ideally, these sessions would occur the same way a small group does: a group of 5 or 6 people meet once a week to watch a video about the topics and then discuss questions that arise from the videos. Meeting once a week will allow the small group to be completed in a one-month span. We would recommend scheduling the small group for after a Sunday service when the guest is already coming to the church. Having lunch together and engaging in the discussions will help create bonds and friendships between the guests and the members of the group.
The small group should consist of the facilitator (does not need to be an ordained minister), any guests who are interested in learning more about our Church, and a few members from the congregation. The members of the congregation who participate will help create a more comfortable atmosphere for the guests who are participating in the small group. The members should be comfortable talking about their faith and also be open to the faith experiences that the guests may have had outside of the New Apostolic Church. The goal is to create a welcoming atmosphere where we can learn from each other and grow in our understanding of what we believe.
When The Basics are finished, the facilitator should connect the guests to a small group that meets regularly. The small group facilitator should reach out and invite the guests to their group. It might be more comfortable if the guests were part of a small group that meets in a home.
Also, after The Basics sessions are completed and if the guest seems to want to pursue becoming a member, the next step will be for them to have a conversation with an ordained minister. For this reason, it is helpful if the facilitator of The Basics stays in communication with the ordained minister, maybe after each small group session, so that they can understand some of the things discussed and brought up in the sessions. After the completion of the discussions, the minister should reach out to the guest to see if they have any additional questions about the Church and to explain what next steps are available to them.