Worship happens not just when we “gather” but also when we are “scattered.” In fact, the majority of our worship happens not on Sunday mornings, but the other hours throughout our week. Because of this, we place a strong emphasis on spiritual formation, the personal responsibility of each person to pursue God “with all of their heart, soul, mind, and strength” (Deut. 6:5, Matt. 22:37).

Our Spiritual Formation Groups are intentional communities that meet weekly with the purpose of providing opportunities for spiritual growth and maturity. See below for a listing of all of our current groups. 

  1. House Churches – a small group that meets in a home for the purpose of spiritual formation through discussion, support, accountability, and living life together. A spiritual family. These groups tend to be more inward-focused (Proverbs 27:17; Acts 5:42).
  2. Mission Groups – a group that has a specific outward focus. These groups function as the hands and feet of Jesus by serving others in our neighborhoods and communities (Hebrews 6:10).
  3. Spiritual Focus Groups – a group that has a focus on a specific aspect of spiritual formation (prayer, studying the Bible, discernment, etc.). These groups will be more focused on strengthening and maturing our relationship with God through spiritual disciplines (Ephesians 4:11-13).
  4. Hybrid Groups – a group that is a combination of a House Church, Mission Group, or Spiritual Focus Group.
  5. Summer Sessions – a series of one-time spiritual formation experiences throughout June and July. Many of our traditional Spiritual Formation Groups take a break over the summer and the summer sessions serve as an opportunity for exploration, community-building, and experiencing God in ways outside of our regular routines.
     

SUMMER SESSIONS 2018

break out of your ordinary

We are taking advantage of the natural breaks many of our Spiritual Formation Groups will have during the summer months to offer 8 one-time Spiritual Formation Experiences. For the months of June and July, Common Ground West will be hosting one unique event each week that will provide opportunities for exploration, community-building, and experiencing God in ways outside of our regular routines.

  DAY TRIPS

  1. Sunrise Hike
    -Date: Tuesday, June 5
    -Description: An early morning hike at Eagle Creek Park to experience the sunrise in God’s creation.
    -Open to all ages (under 16 require parent/guardian/chaperone)
    -Cost: Free
    -Contact: Scott Rice and Joe Garner
     
     
  2. 100 Acres
    -Date: Saturday, June 16
    -Description: A day of exploration and experiencing God’s beauty at 100 Acres.
    -Open to all ages (under 16 require parent/guardian/chaperone)
    -Cost: Free

    -Contact: Scott Rice and Joe Garner 
     
  3. Cultural Trail
    -Date: Saturday, July 7
    -Description: A time of discussion as we walk through parts of downtown Indianapolis along the cultural trail.
    -Open to all ages (under 16 require parent/guardian/chaperone)
    -Cost: Free

    -Contact: Scott Rice and Joe Garner 
     
  4. Cincinnati
    -Date: Saturday, July 14
    -Description: Visit National Underground Railroad Freedom Center and share in a community meal from Jungle Jim’s.
    -Ages 13 + (under 16 require parent/guardian/chaperone)
    -Cost: Freedom Center admission, food and gas (approximately $45)
    -Contact: Scott Rice and Joe Garner 
     
  5. Night Hike
    -Date: Friday, July 20
    -Description: Approximately 1 hour, guided night hike and time of contemplation on the north side of Indianapolis.
    -Open to all ages (under 16 require parent/guardian/chaperone)
    -Cost: Free

    -Contact: Scott Rice and Joe Garner 

 OVERNIGHT TRIPS

  1. Charles Deam Camping Experience
    -Date: June 8-10
    -Description: A weekend of primitive camping in the Hoosier National Forest- Charles C Deam Wilderness for hiking, exploring, and communal activities.
    -Ages 16+ (under 18 require parent/guardian)
    -Cost: Food and gas (approximately $25)

    -Contact: Scott Rice and Joe Garner 
     
  2. Abraham Journey
    -Date: June 29-July 1
    -Description: A weekend based on Genesis 12-23.  We will discern together (through listening prayer) where we will be going and where we will be staying. As a group we will build an altar to God (Gen. 12:6, 13:18, 22:9), actively bless the people we encounter (Gen. 12:2-3), and talk about sacrifice (Gen. 22:1-13).
    -Ages 16+ (under 18 require parent/guardian)
    -Cost: lodging, gas, and food (approximately $40)

    -Contact: Scott Rice and Joe Garner 
     
  3. Chicago
    Date: July 28-29
    -Description:  A weekend in Chicago with visits to Reba House, Navy Pier, and a local church service on Sunday morning (10 spots available).
    -Ages 13+ (under 16 require parent/guardian/chaperone)
    -Cost: Lodging for 1 night, Gas, and Food (approximately $75)

    -Contact: Scott Rice and Joe Garner 

Spring Groups 2018

 

HOUSE CHURCHES

 

Melbourne House Church:

We are working out what it looks like to place Jesus in the center of our lives and share that good news with each other and the many paths we walk in community. Our evenings together tend to follow the sermon series while leaving space for the questions and wrestlings that are often unearthed when intentionally stepping in to a deeper relationship with Jesus.

  • Leaders: Robin Sturdivant and Joe Garner
  • Time: Wednesday evenings from 6:30pm to 8:00pm (doors open at 6:00pm)
  • Location: 42nd and Kessler
  • Childcare: No formal childcare, but can be arranged as needed

McBlenney House Church:

  • Leaders: Matt Tenney, Amy Tenney, Jacob Blanchard
  • Time: Friday and Sunday evenings (every other week)
  • Location: Walker Farms, Zionsville
  • Childcare: Paid babysitter
  • Contact for more info.

Clark House Church:

We are a group of believers that want to live life together by serving and encouraging each other where we are at currently with life.

  • Leaders: Randy Clark and Melissa Clark
  • Time: Wednesdays, contact for specific time
  • Location: Brownsburg
  • Childcare: Children spend time together in the basement

 

SPIRITUAL FOCUS GROUPS

 

Prayer Exploration Group

Description: We want to grow deeper in our practice and understanding of prayer. We will study and put into practice various forms of prayer. We will utilize scripture, listen to the Spirit’s direction, reference certain books, and use our own experiences to help guide us. Once a month we will widen our circle and meet with the morning prayer group to pray for our church and each other.

  • Leader: Angie Smith
  • Time: Wednesdays from 6:30pm to 8:00pm
  • Location: 56th and Georgetown
  • Childcare not provided

Punk Monks and Prayer Warriors

Description: Our aim will be to grow in prayer and live daily in the presence of God. Each time we gather we will pray together in various ways and encourage one another to continue new, deeper ways of prayer throughout the week. We will utilize the book Prayer, by Richard Foster, as a reference during our time together.

  • Leader: Randa Smith
  • Time: 1st and 3rd Friday of the month at 10:00am
  • Location: Southwest Avon
  • Childcare: Children welcome 

HYBRID GROUPS

 

Hergott Group

Description: Relational and prayer based time together as we share what the Lord is doing in our lives. We will also be intentionally serving others in our community once or twice a month.

  • Leaders: Cody Hergott and Jamie Hergott
  • Time: Thursdays from 6:30pm to 8:00pm
  • Location: Avon
  • Childcare: Paid babysitting

KayLeo Group

Description: The 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the month we will meet as a house church to discuss what God is doing in our lives. The 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month we will meet as a spiritual focus group to explore spiritual disciplines.

  • Leaders: Marilyn Schulte and Scott Rice
  • Time: Tuesdays from 6:30pm to 8:00pm
  • Location: 56th and Georgetown
  • Childcare: None provided

Cook Group

Description: Our mission is to be a Holy Spirit focused/led group. We want to practice and go deeper in listening prayer, visions, and prophetic ministry. We also want to spend time getting to know each other and our own personal stories.

  • Leaders: Ryan Cook and Scott Morrow
  • Time: Sunday evenings from 4:00pm to 7:00pm
  • Location: Avon – rotating locations.
  • Childcare: Babysitter for children

Have a question you didn't see answered, or interesting in joining/starting a group? Contact Scott Rice

WINTER AND FALL SESSIONS

Spiritual Formation Groups start twice a year (see list above for current groups listing.) Winter/spring groups begin in January and will run through the end of May. Fall groups begin in August and will run with the school year calendar - through the beginning of December or through May of the following year as predetermined by the leaders of the group. At the end of each session individuals in the group and the leaders of the group will take some intentional time (during the summer break or holiday break) to evaluate if they as individuals and/or as a group are interested in continuing into the next session or if it is the appropriate time for participation in the group to end.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

We’ve always just done “house churches” in the past. Why the new format?

While the house church model has served us well over the years, we recognize that as a church we are in a place where a house church may not be the best fit for everyone in regards to communal, spiritual formation. It is our desire to provide a variety of opportunities for spiritual formation in the hopes of meeting people where they are in life.

Over the past several years we've often had folks wanting to start something new, or to join a group that doesn't fit the traditional "house church" model. We wanted to provide more freedom and empowerment within our congregation, while at the same time retaining the strengths of the house churches. Our new approach is aimed at helping folks step into their Kingdom calling and a healthier diversity of groups, gifts, and leadership in our church.

How are these new groups different from house churches?

House churches tend to be a more general approach to spiritual formation. Mission groups and Spiritual Focus groups have a more specific focus and vision. Of course all spiritual formation groups will have things in common, but we believe having clear expectations of what each group will provide will be helpful for those looking to join a group.

Why have sessions/intentional end dates?

We believe it’s important to not only plan how a group will start and how it will function once going, but also how a group can end well. While we encourage commitment and the building of relationships of individuals within our Spiritual Formation Groups, we also recognize that it is possible for a group, left unchecked, to continue past the point of healthiness for its individuals. In addition, groups having an established end date from the very beginning will allow individuals (including leaders) to know exactly what they are committing to when they join. Having clear expectations on commitment is often less intimidating to newcomers.

When my group’s established end is reached do we have to stop meeting?

No. The session’s end is merely an intentional time for both those in the group and the leaders of the group to stop and evaluate if they are interested in continuing for another session. If individuals are interested in continuing and the leaders (or new leaders) are as well, they can start up again in the next session (with a new established ending/evaluating period).

Can I be in more than one Spiritual Formation Group?

Yes. As long as you are willing and able to meet the expectations presented by the leaders, you can be in multiple Spiritual Formation Groups.

Can I leave the group I attend currently in order to join another?

You are always free to stop attending any group you are a part of. However, it is our desire that you leave your group in a healthy manner. If being unhappy or frustrated is your reason for wishing to leave your current group, you are highly encouraged to seek reconciliation with your group before leaving.

If you want to join a group that has already begun, you will need to first contact the leaders of the group in order to see if the group is accepting any new members. Once groups are established they have the option of remaining “open” to new members or being “closed”.

What steps do I take if I’m interested in joining or leading a group?

Contact Scott Rice at scottr@cground.org.