simple-church-coversTo promote movement though the process, Immanuel has placed their weekly programs at key points along their process. They use their Sunday morning worship services to make “connecting believers.” The worship service is designed to bring people into a relationship with God and other Christians.

After someone comes to the worship service, the person is encouraged to plug into an adult Bible fellowship. Immanuel offers adult Bible fellowships on Sunday mornings to make “growing believers.”

The process does not end there. Once an adult attends an adult Bible fellowship, the person is challenged to join a smaller group. These smaller groups are designed to help people become “serving believers.” Each adult Bible fellowship is made up of several smaller groups. These groups are serving teams, and they do ministry together either in the community or in the church.

Immanuel strategically moves adults from worship services to Bible fellowships to small groups. By moving people from program to program, people naturally progress through the simple process.

Movement is intentional at Immanuel. For example, the content of the adult Bible fellowships coincides with the message in the worship service. Tony writes what he calls “coordinates” each week that supplement his message. The Bible fellowship leaders use these coordinates as curriculum. Tony is able to invite the people at the worship service to attend a Bible fellowship “to get more information and go deeper.”

People are intentionally moved from the “connecting believer” level to the “growing believer” level. There is a clear overlap between the worship service and the next step. The overlap promotes movement. Without an overlap, people fall through the cracks.

To move people from Adult Bible Fellowships (ABF) to serving groups, Tony and the ABF leaders decided to link the small serving groups to the ABFs. When someone goes to an ABF, they are immediately given the opportunity to plug into a small serving group. There is no space between the programs. Movement occurs easily.


Rainer, T., & Geiger, E. (2011). Simple church. Nashville: B&H.