I recently wrote a post for Seedbed on “How to Reclaim Wesleyan Class Meetings.” Check it out if you are interested.
For those of you who are finding your way to my blog for the first time because of the Seedbed article – Welcome!
A year and a half ago I wrote a series of posts on the Wesleyan Class Meeting for the 21st century that may be of interest to Seedbed readers who want to learn more. For convenience, here are the titles of the posts in that series:
1. The Origin and Development of the Class Meeting.
2. The Potential Contribution of the Class Meeting for 21st c. Wesleyans/Methodists.
3. The Target Audience of Class Meetings.
4. Top Ten Ways to Guarantee Your Class Meeting Will Fail (Intended to be humorous).
5. Is the Class Meeting too Judgmental and Exclusive?
6. The Role of the Class Leader.
A good friend of mine from Munger Place, a church plant from Highland Park UMC in east Dallas, described his experience being a contemporary class leader in an excellent and insightful series of posts that gives a valuable perspective into the lay experience of the class meeting. His posts can be found here:
1. My experience with classes and the role being in a small group has played in my faith journey.
2. The impact leading a class meeting has had on my Christian faith.
3. The impact of classes on my church.
4. The potential impact of class meetings on The UMC.
Finally, I have received questions in various online forums about the difference between the early Methodist class meeting and contemporary Covenant Discipleship groups. I am working on a post to describe the similarities and differences of these two groups as I see them.
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Joe Iovino said:
Found your stuff through the seedbed article and I am finding it very helpful. I am working with a group of people exploring what class meetings would look like in our setting. Read all six of your blogs at Starbucks this afternoon, and will use it to help our meeting this evening.
Most other information I have found is either heavy on the history with little or no 21st century application, or prepackaged “campaigns” or curricula that are more about information than transformation.
Thank you for your work. I expect to purchase several copies of your book soon to share with my team, so we can grow in a similar understanding together.
Kevin Watson said:
Thanks for your kind words, Joe! I often use the information vs. transformation contrast when talking about this material with my students, particularly in noting the shift from the class meeting to Sunday School in the nineteenth century.
I hope we have further opportunity for conversation on down the road.
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