Allen White led his first online small group on CompuServe in 1994 over a dial-up modem and has coached over 1,500 churches on all types of small groups. He is the author of four books, including the recently released Leading Online Small Groups: Embracing the Church’s Digital Future. Allen has led workshops for Willow Creek Association—Canada, the Purpose Driven Church Conference at Saddleback Church, and the upcoming Success with Groups Online Conference with the Dave Ramsey Group. Allen, his wife, Tiffany, and their four children live in Greenville, South Carolina.
Key Questions for Allen White
-What elements really make for an effective small group?
-What are some differences between the dynamics of an online group versus an in-person group?
-What are some different types of groups that you have seen churches use effectively for ministry?
-What are the benefits of a small group creating a group agreement?
Key Quotes from Allen White
“There’s that place you need to go where everybody knows your name, and where they know you, they can help you grow, they help you become what God’s called you to be…so that’s why I’m a big believer in small groups.”
“Some advantages to online small groups—you can immediately say that you’re not limited by any geographical boundaries. You can invite people from anywhere. What we’re seeing is that people who are far from God, people who are far from you, given the invitation, can meet.”
“The more relationship you have in the groups as you begin, the better off the group’s going to be, even in forming the groups.”
“What happens outside of the group greatly impacts what happens inside the group.”
“The leader, in a large part, sets the tone for the group.”
“One of the things that has happened during the pandemic is that the church has put out a ridiculous amount of content…I’m not downplaying content, but in addition to that we need community and we need conversation.”
“If you have a Bible study without getting to that point of, how do I live this out, I really have to ask, what’s the point?”
“We’re seeing people do audio-only groups, as well as asynchronous groups…so you don’t have to be limited to video-based groups.”
“Right now, there’s so much confusion, and people need hope. People need to know that God still is in charge.”