Growth Groups at St Philip's
Beckett’s Croft Growth Group
The growth group – 11 people of which at least 10 are present usually - meeting at Becketts Croft has continued all year to study the Gospel of Matthew. We have used a commentary by Tom Wright ‘Matthew for Everyone’. It is very readable and helps to create a wider perspective when reading the Gospel – but we have not always agreed with the author! It does however provide for much discussion, which is laced with insights and humour. We have finished with a better appreciation of the story as written by Matthew, and above all the emphasis that the kingdom of God is often the opposite of what we humans might expect or even want.
Vicarage Growth Group
We meet on Thursday afternoons, fortnightly, and have developed from a group that met to do ‘Christianity Explored’. We now have a core group of seven and would welcome anyone else who would like to join us. In the last year we have been using the Church of England’s ‘Pilgrim’ courses; we have been through the studies on The Lord’s Prayer, The Ten Commandments and The Beatitudes. We enjoy the format of ‘Pilgrim’, which includes a video (available on YouTube) to set us thinking, a Bible study, and some recorded reflections by a notable theologian – all with lots of discussion. We are about to start the next module, looking at the Creeds. During Lent we used one of the York courses, ‘On the third day’, which has helped us think about the meaning of resurrection. As group leader, I enjoy hosting this group and I assume others are enjoying it because they keep coming back!
Orchard Way Growth Group
The Orchard Way growth group has grown to around 10 members and we have continued meet every two weeks. This year we worked through John Stott’s study guide on the Book of Acts. Now we are reading and studying a book called ‘God’s Big Picture’ by Vaughan Roberts which traces the storyline of God’s plan throughout the whole Bible. We like to think we are a friendly, supportive group who want to help each other develop in our relationships with God. Our meetings usually involve a heathy mix of study, biscuits, coffee, chat and laughter! We try to meet outside our meetings as well: we had over 20 people at our now annual Christmas meal and many of us are going to Spring Harvest in Minehead this April. We are always keen to welcome new members, even if you can’t make every meeting.
Tuesday Night Ladies Group
This group seeks to be a source of support, friendship and Godly wisdom for ladies in Kelsall. Most recently, we have been studying a “LifeBuilder” Bible study book entitled ‘Woman of God’ and through this we have had the opportunity to consider topics such as being ready for God’s call and being content in all situations. Prior to this, we read Bill Hybels’ book ’Simplify’ which was greatly helpful for inspiring discussions on prioritising the important things, deepening relationships and recognising the different seasons in our lives. We would welcome new members - please do not hesitate to get in touch!
No 1. Ladies Group
After finishing the Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren which asked us the most basic question everyone faces in life “Why am I here? What is my purpose - What on earth am I here for” our next book was the new book by Lysa Terkeurst - “The Best Yes”, which as Lysa explained is the choice that shapes all our other choices. It’s what allows us to play our necessary parts in God’s plan, to spend our energy and focus our passion on the assignments that really are ours. Too many of us get distracted from our Best Yes life because we confuse the command to love with the disease to please. In the video-based Bible study Lysa TerKeurst shared how to make better use of the two most powerful words, yes and no. Using Biblical teaching and practical insights this study helped us to be more equipped to discern the best yes answers for our own lives.
As a group we are presently joining in once a month with Peter’s prayer workshops in which we are looking at the book Naked Spirituality by Brian McLaren. McLaren picks up on twelve words which are helping us to get to the heart of prayer and to grow in our practice of prayer. The twelve words are grouped into seasons - simplicity, complexity, perplexity and harmony. On the alternative fortnightly Wednesday, we meet together as our home group and Andrea Gray is leading the evening by picking up and elaborating on the corresponding chapter from Naked Spirituality which has been discussed at the workshop.