Here are six questions you’ll need to answer in order to set sail on your own summer Bible study adventure.
How to Organize Your Own Summer Bible Study
1. What type of group do you want to create?
Do you want to launch a group within your church? Do you want to invite people from several different churches? Do you want both men and women? Do you want it geared toward couples, adults, young adults, youth, or a mix-and-match of everyone? Prayerfully consider who God is leading you to invite. Start spreading the word to family and friends.
Hang fliers on your local library’s community board, your church, or at the coffee shop down the street. Consider inviting those you may not have thought of—that neighbor down the street, the co-worker in the office next door, the bank teller you speak to often. You never know who may be seeking fellowship.
2. How many people should be in your summer Bible study group?
You’ll want anywhere from 5-15 members, although numbers will flux some depending on the type of book club. However, when numbers climb over 15 people, not everyone has the chance to discuss and side conversations can be easily distracting. If you have more than 15 people, consider breaking off into small groups during discussion and prayer times.
3. How often should you meet?
For a summer Bible study, you’ll want to meet often enough to keep people interested and held accountable, but with enough time between meetings to not fill up already busy schedules. Consider meeting once per week or every other week.
4. When should you meet?
Finding a common time for everybody’s schedule can be difficult and takes flexibility. Think about starting an online forum, such as bigtent.com or create a private group on Facebook, as you try to figure out a meeting time. Understand that you won’t be able to please everyone and encourage others to be flexible, too.
Send weekly texts, emails, and phone calls to encourage one another and hold each other accountable. Even if you cannot meet together, having a friend to walk alongside you during the Bible study can make a big difference!
5. Where should you meet?
Meet in a place that stimulates discussion—a coffee shop can be a relaxing atmosphere, but if the local shop is too popular you may not be able to hear each other speak. A lot of groups enjoy meeting in each other’s homes if available, especially for a summer Bible study.
6. How do you communicate expectations?
Before your first meeting, be sure to touch-base with your members and relay all expectations. Will members switch off bringing snacks? Will there be childcare available? Who will lead discussion? This will clarify and smooth over any unnecessary bumps in the road.