EXT. Groups Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are (EXT.) Groups?
A: Extension (EXT.) Groups are small gatherings of the Body of Christ in the neighborhoods where we live. Sunday begins our week of worship and “extends” into the week for the purpose of accomplishing the work of the church. The work of the church consists of loving the household of faith, fellowship, praise to God, community service and evangelism.
Q: What is so different about these groups from traditional small group ministry?
A: There is no profound difference, but simply Biblical ministry that captures the very best of what the Church is to be under Jesus’ headship. Some of the things we see as vitally important are:
1. The attitude in which we approach these groups, not coming as consumers, but with a determined willingness to love and serve Christ’s Bride.
2. The openness of the group to welcome those who don’t believe into the community of believers with the hope that the Holy Spirit will bring them to saving knowledge.
3. Not segregating the Body of Christ by age.
4. The format of the meeting is to allow for fellowship and a sincere focus on God through praise, prayer, and the power of Scripture.
5. The formation of unity, based solely on a love for Jesus and his kingdom. Christians may find common ground in politics, vocation, education, economics, race, and culture, but these things should never be the unifying factor for Christians. Sadly, often this is the case. If Jesus is not the unifying factor of our church and Christian relationships then our unity is built on sinking sand.
Q: May my EXT. Group replace Sunday worship?
A: No. It is important that Sunday worship be made a priority. Worship is where we experience corporate worship, the preaching of the word, and participation in the Sacraments. The EXT. Group is an extension of the church (Body of Christ) and flows from Sunday worship into the week.
Q: May I go to any (EXT.) Group I want?
A: Yes and no. We would like for people to choose a group that is in proximity to where they live.
Q: How long will (EXT.) Group meetings last?
A: Either 90 minutes or 120 minutes depending on the group.
Q: What is the format of an (EXT.) Group meeting?
A: The format for each (EXT.) Group is the same. All of the elements are identical though there may be variations in order and time spent on each element. Each group will focus on praise, prayer, reading scripture, discussion, and fellowship.
Q: Should I leave my children at home for EXT. Group?
A: No. We want the children of our families to be known, and for them to interact with the Body of Christ, not to be isolated from it. The EXT. Group is a gathering of the Body of Christ and our covenant children are a part of that body. Children need to be among the people of God and see adults pray, read Scripture, praise God, and discuss God’s word.
Q: Should I look for a group that is specific to my age?
A: No. We are not interested in making our (EXT.) Groups age-specific. We do not believe this best represents the Body of Christ and prohibits the spiritual interaction between generations. Young families need elders, and those who are older should seek to invest in the next generation. We would like for you to choose a group in your area where you can love and serve the people in that group regardless of age.
Q: Should I attend an EXT. Group so I can be cared for?
A: No. You should join an EXT. Group to first serve and love the Body of Christ. We need to challenge ourselves on this issue of consumerism. If the members of Christ’s church dedicate themselves to loving God and loving people, then everyone will be cared for. If we enter Christianity to be served, then when we face trial there will be no unity in Christ to hold us together.
Q: In addition to EXT. Groups what is available for children and youth?
A: Children’s Church meets during the sermon on Sunday mornings. High school and middle school youth group meets on Sunday evenings. Please visit the student ministry section of our website for complete information about RPC youth group.