Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Connection Groups (click here)
When do the Summer 2018 groups start?

Summer 2018 groups begin on the week of Sunday, June 3.

Why is it called a “small group”?

A small group is a gathering of 5, 8, 10 or maybe 15 people like you, looking to connect with church members and friends, in the comfort of a host home.  This is one important way we do life together, in a protected and spirited gathering around a study or an activity.

Why are small groups so important in the life of the church?

Small groups foster discipleship and friendship.  Spiritual growth occurs when we share our faith journey, exchange life stories, and practice within a close-knit community.  These practices prepare us for an outward focus to step into our mission field. Friendship breeds most awesomely in this environment.

I’m new to Skyline and/or small groups, how do I find out which groups are available?

Signups take place each January, May, and September.  Groups are also advertised by the way of the Skyline website, printed flyers, Skyline social media, in video promotions during Sunday services and at the Next Steps desk and word-of-mouth.  The next person you encounter on Sunday may be the person sitting next to you in a future small group – stop and introduce yourself NOW.

How do I sign up for a group?

Look over the variety of groups and descriptions below, decide if the meeting day fits your schedule, and scroll back to the top of the page and fill out the form.  Select the name of the group you want to attend and hit SUBMIT. We’ll take it from there and provide you with an email describing more details about the group. Or if you prefer, you can stop by the Next Steps desk, chat with the staff, and sign up there.

Can I bring a friend to a group meeting?  

Yes, in fact we absolutely encourage you to do so.  Please be sure that there is a signup action taken, either by the friend or by you on the friend’s behalf.  If you are considering doing this after the group has begun meeting, check with the group leader.

Are Skyline groups open to folks that are unchurched or do not attend Skyline?

Yes.  We strongly encourage you to reach out to your friends, relatives, co-workers, neighbors, etc. and let them know about Skyline small groups that may interest them.  In-person invitations are the most effective, but you can also send them a note with the church web site address or give then a promotional flyer.

What should I expect in my small group?

In a study group, you should find the topic and accompanying material intriguing, challenging, and beneficial for your spiritual growth.  You should experience great camaraderie and a sense of personal devotion from your fellow members and your group leader, who is prepared to help guide you through the material and manage the tempo of the discussions.

What is a group meeting like?  

It’s like being at a home away from home.  A greeting at the door, a snack and chit-chat, a settling into the common area with announcements, a video or audio or note page reading, some Q&A, prayers and praises, tidying up of the snack area and common spaces, and a departure to wrap up a satisfying session of study – a great way to spend 2 hours with your friendly, fellow church mates.

I see that the group listing indicates multiple days, which specific does that mean?

When you are signing up for a group indicating multiple days, you are asked to identify all days/times that you would be available to attend the group.  This is a new process that caters to choosing a day that accommodates the most signups and gets more people into connection groups. In some of the ING activities, there may be multiple days on which the group meets, and you can choose which one you prefer to attend.

Can I sign up for more than one group?

Yes, if you are intending to attend for a full trimester/season.

What if I need childcare?

The group details will indicate if childcare is or is NOT offered in the group.  Should childcare be offered, you would bring your child or children to the group meeting, and mature supervisors would provide activities for them, in a separate space in the host home.  You can indicate your kids’ ages in the signup form. After the group leader responds to you by email, acknowledging your signup, you can reply to indicate if there are special needs involved.  Or, you can email the Connections Director with any childcare concern prior to signing up. Typically, the participants requiring childcare would contribute an agreed dollar amount to offset the cost of providing childcare.

Are there a set of rules in every group or activity?

Yes.  Examples are: sharing personal experiences, being polite and respectful, and turning cell phone ringers off.  Since groups foster an air of protective intimacy, all discussions and disclosures of a personal nature must be maintained private within the group.

What if I have other questions?

Please reach out to the Connections Director or the Connections Coordinator with any questions not covered here.  Their contact information is provided below this FAQ. If your question is one that may be of general interest, we may add it to the future FAQ section.

 

Skyline O’Fallon Connections Ministry Contacts

For concerns and questions about the Skyline O’Fallon Connections Ministry, please use one of the contacts below:

Connections Director: Tina Totty-Leadley
Email: tottyleadley@gmail.com
Phone: 618-980-9974

 

Connections Coordinator: Tom Swartz
Email: tws6254@gmail.com
Phone: 618-977-8844

CyclING

Leader: Stephanie Tweedy
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Tuesday/Thursday evenings; Saturday mornings &/or Sunday afternoons
Childcare: No

A variety of both road and paved trail routes for different average speeds and distances will be offered on Tuesday/Thursday evenings; Saturday mornings and or Sunday afternoons. Some rides may be just a few laps around Sportsman Park in O’Fallon while others will go for 15-20 miles on roads north of O’Fallon or on country roads out towards Millstadt. You must be in good physical condition and provide your own bicycle in good working order, a helmet, water and a small snack. Rides will be canceled for bad weather.

Additional group/study detail
  • Ride meeting locations, times, distances and average speeds will be communicated weekly.
  • Some rides may start from the Skyline O’Fallon parking lot
  • Some rides may go out as far as Millstadt
  • Invite your unchurched friends to join and participate
  • Waiver of liability may be required
Activity Video

SewING

Leader: Sheryl Dodson
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: One weekday afternoon, one weeknight (Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday)
Childcare: No

The purpose of the group will be to provide a ministry for participants to make sewing projects (quilts, dresses, etc.) for those in need, in a fun and spirit-filled activity. Some sewing experience required.  Recipients of sewing creations will be determined. We will discuss patterns, fabric, and project steps. You can bring your own machine.

JammING

Leader: Chris Habermehl
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Wednesday evenings
Childcare: No

Harken and feed your inner musician on stage. Chris Habermehl of the Skyline O’Fallon worship team will lead fun and entertaining jam sessions. All levels of musical talent are welcome. Bring your instruments, amps, cords, pedals, etc. and join in a variety of songs and genres of music. No set agenda and endless creative possibilities. Let’s jam !!!

Additional group/study detail

Spirited jam sessions on the Skyline O’Fallon stage with all levels of musicality

  • Bring your gear – instruments, amps, cords, pedals, etc.
  • No set agenda
  • Endless creative possibilities
  • Many different genres of music
  • Don’t Be Jelly ….. Let’s JAM !!!

DefendING

Leader: Larry Kern & Dan Matarazzo
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Wednesday evenings
Childcare: No

Skyline’s own Larry Kern and Dan Matarazzo will teach you how to use your body to defend yourself using techniques and maneuvers in everyday settings. No experience required but all levels, ages (teens and above), and genders welcome. These are important life skills taught in a social setting and which will help you in many compromising situations. DefendING will take place at Taylor’s Academy of Dance at Lakepointe Centre in O’Fallon. A minimum of signups will be required to commence the group.

Additional group/study detail

Classes in self-defense by eminently qualified teachers

  • Fee of $20 covers the cost of the course
  • Use your body to defend yourself
  • No experience required but all levels welcome
  • All ages (teens and above) and genders
  • Life skill in a social setting
  • Invite your unchurched friends to join and participate
  • Earn a certificate of merit and proficiency

RunnING

Leader: Chris Doyon
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Wednesday & Friday evenings; Saturday Mornings
Childcare: No

Let’s get together and help each other get better at running. A great opportunity for fun exercise and friendly conversation with exquisite scenery, in the fellowship of a running/jogging group. Open to all ages and experience levels. Different pace groups will cater to your comfort level.

Additional group/study detail
  • Bring water and a snack
  • May initiate with a warmup walk
  • O’Fallon Sports Park has a 2 mile loop; Rock Springs Park has a 1 mile loop

BowlING

Leader: Tim Leadley
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Thursday evenings
Childcare: No

Join us on a regular weeknight for 2 games of bowling. This is a great, popular, fun activity that complements social time with your church family and friends. Expense is for 2 games of bowling plus shoe rental, bring your own socks! Get some good exercise in, enjoy snack bar items, and see how many strikes you can pile up.

Additional group/study detail
  • Evening bowling at St Clair Bowl in O’Fallon
  • Meet at the lanes: 5950 Old Collinsville Rd, Fairview Heights IL 62208 (618-632-2400)
  • Beginners welcome
  • Snack bar and pro shop on premises
  • Invite your unchurched friends to join and participate

BackyardING

Leader: Josh & Keri Henry
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Thursday evenings
Childcare: No; parents are encouraged to bring & supervise their young children

Perfect opportunity for families new to Skyline to get to know those of us who have been going to Skyline for quite some time. Bring a dish, a chair, a beach towel and some backyard games and get to know us. Enjoy swimming, backyard games, BBQ-ing, and conversation

FoodING

Leader: Tina Totty-Leadley
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Friday evenings
Childcare: Determined in group

Food – the final frontier. Pot luck opportunity to enjoy a meal and good social time with your church mates and friends, in a comfortable setting. On some nights there will be visits and car-pooling to area parks to partake of “Food Truck Fridays”. Occasionally we will be prepping and serving food at a Community Center in Washington Park. A compelling topic of discussion will be offered, to weigh in with your personal takes and experience different viewpoints. Invite your unchurched friends to join and participate.

Additional group/study detail

Food brings everyone together for spirited conversation

  • Folks from O’Fallon & Bethalto campuses can participate
  • Food themes will be suggested by the group
  • Some Fridays will feature pot-luck meals
  • Some “Food Truck Fridays” in St Louis parks
  • Invite your unchurched friends to join and participate
  • On 1 Friday a month, a meal will be provided for the Washington Park Youth Meal Outreach

ExplorING

Leader: Tom Swartz
Area: Various
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Saturday morning
Childcare: No

Exploring of points of interest in the St Louis and Metro East region. Meet up on Saturday mornings at an advertised starting point and caravan/car-pool to the site(s) of interest. Finish by early afternoon so your evening plans are not thwarted. A published list of destinations and routes will be identified along with admission pricing (when applicable), and you can attend whichever outings appeal to you. Most events involve a restaurant (or picnic) meal.  Members and guests from O’Fallon and Bethalto campuses are welcome.

Additional group/study detail
  • Sign-ups required
  • Folks from both campuses (O’Fallon & Bethalho) invited to participate
  • RSVP by Thursday prior to each Saturday morning event
  • Friends and supervised young children may attend
  • Full details, photos, and driving instructions for each event will be provided at least 1 week in advance
  • Meet at a central location for embarking
  • Car pooling encouraged
  • Invite your unchurched friends to join and participate

WalkING

Leader: Susan Thomas
Area: O’Fallon
Type: ING (activity)
Day/Time: Saturday mornings
Childcare: Children welcome to attend under parental supervision

Join us on Saturday mornings for walking, exercise stations, social time, devotional and scripture readings with friends. All ages are welcome. Strollers also welcome. We will accommodate speed of walking or light jogging, but no sprinting. This will offer a great cardiovascular workout. If Saturdays don’t work for you, reach out to me, I plan to go walking during the week as well.

Additional group/study detail
  • A period of stretching will precede the walk
  • Exercise stops may include sit-ups, lunges, other strength and endurance builders (modification for ability will be provided)
  • Young children can play at the park at the end of the walk but must be within sight of their parent(s)
  • Devotional will be during the cool down at the end
  • Total of 2.4 miles in the loop, for 50 minutes of paced walking
  • Invite your unchurched friends to join and participate

Wild At Heart

Leader: Jon Sanchez
Area: O’Fallon
Type: Men’s study
Day/Time: Sunday evenings
Childcare: No

A battle to fight. An adventure to live. A beauty to rescue.
These are the core desires panting deep in the heart of every man. They are universal and essential in order to live life as a man; they provide the power for his life. Misplaced, forgotten, or misdirected, they do not go away.  This provocative journey will explore these God-given concepts and how to wield the wild and ferocious heart beating in every man’s chest.

Study Video

Starting Point

Leader: Scott Milford
Area: O’Fallon
Type: Unbelievers, new Christians, returning Christians
Day/Time: Monday evenings
Childcare: Yes

Everything has a beginning. Every person, every idea, every journey starts somewhere. Whether it’s one small step in a new direction or a major event, from that point forward nothing is ever the same.
It’s not always comfortable. It’s not always easy. But it’s a start. If you’re a new believer or someone with questions about Christianity this group will provide the foundation for the Christian faith.

Study Video

Hoodwinked (Mothers’ Group)

Leader: Gloria Mendoza
Area: O’Fallon
Type: Moms’ study
Day/Time: Tuesday or Wednesday or Thursday mornings
Childcare: Yes

This video-based study from Karen Ehman, author and speaker with Proverbs 31 Ministries, and Ruth Schwenk, of www.thebettermom.com, will encourage and inspire women to embrace their roles as mothers wholeheartedly yet realistically, whether they work outside the home, have a home business, or are stay-at-home moms.

Study Video

Couples Evangelism

Leader: Tom & Jenni Swartz
Area: O’Fallon
Type: Life Group for Married Couples
Day/Time: Tuesday evenings
Childcare: No

With “The Unchurched Next Door”, level-setting our proper understanding of survey-based metrics will initiate us on what to expect from being invitational. For example, 8 out of 10 unchurched folks would visit a church if only someone invited them. And in the “Gospel Shaped Outreach” DVD-based study, Erik Raymond will take us through evangelism foundations and non-gimmicky, real connections with folks who have not heard the good news or have been let down. This study will emphasize couples evangelism as an uncomplicated, heart-driven, essential discipline.

Study Video

Diving Deeper (Adults)

Leader: Tim Ranz
Area: New Baden
Type: Adults study
Day/Time: Wednesday evenings
Childcare: Determined in group

Opportunity to take a deeper look at Pastor Lance’s messages each week. In this group, attendees will be able to dive a little deeper into the text, discuss the overarching points, and better apply them to their lives.

Study Video

Marriage, Fun, & Dating (GROUP IS FULL)

Leader: Mark & Denyse Anderson
Area: O’Fallon
Type: Life Group for Married Couples (10+ years)
Day/Time: Tuesday evenings
Childcare: No

This Life Group will explore the essentials of a successful marriage. We’re going to mix it up from week to week with different lessons, fun activities, and fellowship. Lessons and activities will include video excerpts and discussions, marriage dating activities, double-dates and group dates (but not fruit dates).
Material featured will include Ted Cunningham, Mark Gungor, John Christ, David & Claudia Arp (10 Great Dates) and more!

Study Video