What are Life Groups?

Life Groups create space within our stressful schedules to experience dynamic spiritual growth together. Through shared spiritual practices we call a Rule of Life, we connect with God through worship, prayer, and Scripture; by doing justice and sharing faith we hope to extend God’s wholeness to the world; in the process, we find deeper connection with each other.

How do I know if a Life Group is for me?

All that’s required to be a part of a life group is a desire to grow, experiment, and share your spiritual journey as you feel comfortable. You don’t need any religious background or knowledge; it’s OK to be seeking what faith looks like for you. All of us are beginners together, just trying to take the next step towards Jesus.

How do I sign up?

  1. Read the descriptions below and decide which group you want to join.
  2. Then, sign up using this link.
  3. After you sign up, the leader of the group will contact you with further details.

Most, but not all, groups will meet weekly for two hours and meet through November.  Any exceptions are noted in the group descriptions.

Questions?

Contact Pastor Gary VanderPol (gary@churchwithoutwallsberkeley.org)

All groups described below practice the five elements of our Rule of Life (prayer, Scripture, worship, justice, and evangelism) but most have chosen an “anchor practice” that distinguishes their group.

TUE 01 – Team Twenties
led by: Joyce Lee and Rachel Li
When: Tuesdays at 7:30
Are you a young adult in the midst of work, grad school, big decisions, or life transitions? All of the above? Join us as we help each other find God and have a bit of fun along the way.

TUE 02 – CWOW Advocates
led by: Gary VanderPol
when and where: Usually Tuesday evenings, but we flex with our changing schedules.
Looking for a practical, effective way to do justice together? Come join us as we grow in using our political voices as allies with those left behind or damaged by the structures of our society. We aren’t looking to engage in partisan politics, but to do the hard work of advocating for issues long supported by CWOW such as educational equity, ending mass incarceration, and immigration reform.

TUE 03 – Intergenerational Group FULL
led by: Jill and Pete Gidlund
when: Tuesday evenings, 6-8 pm. Part of our time will be dinner together.
where: West Berkeley
We are an intergenerational group, meaning we’ll welcome all ages. Sometimes, we will break out into age-specific groups, separating kids and adults, but most of the time we will practice worshiping, praying, studying Scripture and doing justice and evangelism together. Our anchor practice will be following a liturgy of songs, prayers and Scriptures that everyone can follow; readers will be able to follow along right away, while younger children will learn by repetition.

TUE 04 – Ignatian Spirituality in Everyday Life
led by: Loretta Matty
when: Tuesday evenings, 7:00 – 8:30 pm
where: Northwest Berkeley
We have an unstructured approach, but often include worship songs and time for sharing. We attempt to understand and experience Ignatian spirituality as well as engaging with historic and present injustice, especially as it regards race, in our culture.

TUE 05
led by: Jason and Jane Lee
when and where: Tuesday evenings, 8:15 – 9:30 pm
Our group exists to form community and discipleship for people in circumstances that makes attending a weekly, in-person group challenging (e.g., parents of young children). We are an entrepreneurial bunch who will try different technological and logistical approaches to facilitate both remote and in-person discussions, which will be inspired by the sermon series. Our current plan is to have weekly meetings virtually on Tuesdays at 815 pm.

WED 01 – Faith and Work
led by: Ron Some and Gary VanderPol
when: Wednesday evenings, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
where: South Berkeley
We spend most of our waking hours on the job, but often our faith and work lives feel disconnected. In order to integrate our journey with Jesus, vocation and justice must be deeply rewarding in a really tangible way. But we need help from God and others to do this! Through Scripture, readings, dialogue, prayer and friendship, we’ll learn and take steps of faith together. It will be an encouraging and stretching experience!

WED 02 – cwow.justice.edu
led by: Deborah and Tim Zenor-Davis
when: Wednesday evenings, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
where: West Berkeley
Each week we gather to dig into Scripture, share our lives and stories, pray, worship, reflect, and laugh a lot. Our justice practice is a focus on educational equity, and over the next six months, we’ll be doing some hands-on activities to partner with local schools, students and families in exciting ways. No experience required–just a heart for the kids and youth of our greater community. Come join us!

THU 01 – CWOW Artists’ Collective
led by: Bora Reed and Lynn Lee
when: Thursday evenings, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
where: Berkeley
Are you an artist? Whether you answered with a resounding “yes!” or raised a tentative hand while your heart roiled with angst, we invite you to engage your calling through the lens of Christian spirituality. Through Bible study, prayer and sharing, we will explore our vocation and offer practical support as we work. You do not have to be a full time artist, but the expectation is that you are working on your art…or are at least committed to trying. Artists of all mediums and spiritual backgrounds welcome.

THU 02 – Justice and Restoration
led by: Wes Reed and Dana Lundblad
when: Thursday evenings, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
where: Berkeley
Starting with a foundation in what scripture has to say about justice and restoration, with some consideration of issues present in and influencing our criminal justice system, we will serve people entering life after incarceration. This is meant to be an exploration with much learning, experimentation, discovery, and a variety of ways for members to respond. Okay, that all sounds pretty serious. We will also be enjoying life together as we nurture our spiritual lives and eat good snacks.

FRI 01
led by: Kim Winkleman
when: Friday mornings, 10:0 am-12:00 pm
where: West Berkeley
Got time during the day? Join us to study the texts of the sermon series, pray and worship together. We put an emphasis on creating a safe space to share our real selves and what God is up to in our lives.

Spiritual Direction & Discernment FULL
led by: Sharon Henthorn-Iwane
when: TBD
where: Berkeley
God is speaking, but how do I hear him? God is at work, but how do I recognize His activity? God is loving and empowering me, but how do I experience that reality? Are you asking these kinds of questions or do you desire more of God? In the context of group spiritual direction and prayer for each other outside the group, we will form a spiritual community which assists people in ongoing individual discernment. We will meet twice a month in a set group of 6-8 people. Come as you are. No spiritual direction experience necessary!

CWOW en Español
Dirigido por: Humberto y Gaddy Reyes
Donde y Cuando: Póngase en contacto con Gaddy y Humberto para más información
Somos un grupo que se reune en español para estudio bíblico, oración, alabanza y servicio. Niños y jovenes son incluídos. Si tiene interés en aprender más sobre este grupo, ¡por favor déjenos saber!

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