Kim and I are hosting the The Alpha Course in our home on Sunday nights. This was an exciting opportunity for us because some of our neighbors have recently started attending our church and this way we can just have people “come over to our place” for Dinner and a Movie. I (Joel) am having a lot of fun hosting the small group. We have had some lively discussion already. If you aren’t familiar with The Alpha Course, you can check it out here: http://www.alphausa.org/
If you just want the jist of it, The Alpha Course is a course that meets on a weekly basis that takes a look at basics of Christianity and tries to help answer some of life’s deeper questions: What is the meaning of life? What happens when we die? Etc. It does this through a series of talks on different questions about Christianity: Who is Jesus? Why did Jesus die? How can I be sure of my faith? Etc.
The main thing that I love about Alpha is that it is so safe for non-believers. Alpha welcomes skeptic, athiests, and the like. We meet in a home so that people aren’t scared away by a church building. There are a lot of people there that are available to welcome all the newcomers each week and help them feel at home. A wonderful meal is prepared each week for the guests so it is safe to say that everyone feels very welcomed and taken care of.
At our church, we are actually running Alpha for the 8th time. We haven’t seen incredibly large growth because of this, but we have seen a lot of small successes by way of non-Christians coming to faith. Also, it has been great for our congregation to come be a part of it, re-establish their grounding in their faith and get to know other church members at a much deeper level. Much deeper than what you can get on a Sunday by Sunday basis.
I have had a lot of experience with Alpha so if anyone has any questions about starting The Alpha Course at your church, please just let me know.