First, it’s important to note that home groups are the focus of Dwell Community Church’s structure. But we also believe that a large meeting can uniquely accomplish certain elements of the Christian life that we see pictured in the New Testament.
For instance, the early churches met in houses but also came together in large meetings to hear the teachings of the apostles. Strong, culturally relevant Bible teachings are the focal point of these larger meetings we call Central Teachings (CTs). CTs provide a setting in which a couple thousand adults hear God’s Word taught through highly gifted and trained teachers. Dozens of home churches come together, often bringing friends and family who want to have their questions answered about Christianity.
What do we do at Central Teachings?
Our facility helps to set an informal, non-traditional atmosphere in which Christians and non-Christians alike can relax. People are welcome to take coffee, pop and snacks into the auditorium, while they hear what God might want to say to them through His word. CTs start with prayer, followed by an expository Bible teaching that lasts about 40 to 50 minutes. (Check out our extensive online teachings.)
After the teaching, people can ask questions using microphones, or wait until the meeting concludes to privately talk with the teacher. We close the meeting with prayer. We also provide digital recordings and presentations from these meetings at our Study Center, in our Bookstore and on the web.
Our meetings are not “worship services,” as you might typically think of. Dwell takes a somewhat unusual but biblical view of what worship is in the New Testament. Our Web site explains more about our view of biblical worship. Each meeting is sensational for helping non-Christians come to a relationship with Jesus Christ, grounding new believers and challenging more mature believers.
Several of our elders, as well as our Senior Sphere Leaders, are the regular Central Teaching teachers at different venues. They have a primary responsibility to teach and lead their own Spheres, but we strive to have them rotate periodically to other Sphere CTs whenever possible.
In parallel with our Central Teaching meeting times for adults, we also offer excellent programs on-site for infants, toddlers, and school-aged children, called “Oasis”. For middle students, we hold parallel meetings. This frees up parents and children alike to enjoy a teaching and meeting designed just for them.
Which home churches attend which Central Teaching?
We strongly encourage home churches to join together to “host” a meeting by designating one of the CT times as their primary meeting. This is good for the home church, since they can meet each other’s guests and have additional time together. It’s also good for the meeting, since the different home churches provide the volunteers and the ideas needed to make all aspects of the meeting enjoyable, including the time afterward.