Tonight Amanda and I went to Port City Community Church’s small group connection.  We’ve been to a number of them, so here’s a rundown.

The first one we went to was held in the old church offices on Shipyard.  We started a small group with  two other couples.  One couple never showed up and the other couple came for a few weeks, got married, and never showed up after that.

So we went to the next small group connection, this one also being held at the old church offices.  This one started off what I’d call the Golden Age of any of the small groups we’ve been involved with.  It lead to the formation of a group consisting of me and Amanda, Ben and Jessica Lambeth, Paul and Kim Ayers and Rob Peterson and Kristen Barriner.  There was admittedly a little friction and Paul and Kim eventually stopped coming, but the group was still pretty close.

A while after Paul and Kim left, we decided to see about adding to the three remaining couples so Amanda and I went to another small group connection, this one having been held at Studio 3.  There we ostensibly picked up two or three new couples, but only one ever showed up, and that’s how Elliot Clark and Melissa Nicholson joined our group.  Shortly after that though, Ben and Jessica moved to Winston-Salem.

Our group stayed pretty active though, mostly due to the online service called Group Finder.  People our age are wont to use the internet, and we picked up several couples that way.  We added Adam and Meagan Koch for a few months until they moved to Virginia, then we added Kyle and Lorin Van Zandt until they started their own small group, Brian and Kimberly Willows for about a week or so, Mike and Kaitlyn Boscaljon and then Justin and Lisa Hauenstein.  As I mentioned yesterday, it looks like we’ll be adding another couple via Group Finder- Mike and Sarah Nowak.

From the time we gained Elliot and Melissa up until today we also went to maybe three or four other group connections, but not in search of adding members.  We went to help out with the events, and that’s how we met Blake and Stephanie Konny who, though we were never in a small group together, have shared many a game night with us since.  The small group connections have been different many of the times we’ve been to them, in one capacity or another.  It’s an evolving thing with no real set formula on how to go about them.

So that’s the history of me and Amanda and PC3 small group connections up to tonight.

We went tonight because we recently disbanded the most recent version of our small group (Elliot and Melissa, the Boscaljons and the Hauensteins) because we just weren’t all able to come together consistently for a few different reasons and we wanted to be in an active small group.  We’ve been invited to join other groups, and I think we’d have gotten a lot out of them, but the church is in need to group leaders so we thought it would be best to start a new group instead of joining an existing one.  We just want to get one where we feel close with people who are going through the same or similar things in their lives, people about our age at the same stage in life.  We know how good a small group can be not only from our own experiences, but also from hearing other people talk about their own small groups.

Tonight we formed a group with three other couples, which also leaves room for the Nowaks and the Hauensteins, when Lisa is fully recovered and they’re ready to get back into it.  As we’ve seen in all but one instance, generally not all of the people you get together at the connection end up coming or staying for very long, so we’ll see what happens from this one.

Zach Dotsey