Welcome to Small Group Ministry Basic Training!

Hi there! Thanks for taking a look at my new program: Small Group Ministry Basic Training!

Regardless of the official role you play, (i.e., whether you are a paid member of a church staff or a passionate volunteer, whether you’re able to specialize as a small group pastor or director or you’re a senior pastor wearing a lot of hats), there is probably plenty for you to learn. It’s a never-ending journey for me. I bet it is for you too.

With very little forethought or planning, I sort’ve drifted into a growing awareness of the importance of life in community. The short version of my story is that over 30 years ago I literally tripped across a way of making disciples that encouraged a rapidly growing network of just-a-step-or-two-ahead group leaders who were being developed and discipled by a passionate band of only somewhat more mature followers (code word: student led, staff driven).

It sounds crazy when I say it out loud, but that beginning ignited the continual learner in me (some would say the “mad scientist”) and over the last three decades I’ve found myself within arm’s reach and close enough to the epicenter of many of grouplife’s greatest innovations and innovators. With a thinking wavelength style somewhere between a finder and conceiver, I’m always searching for a better way to do something or a better way to explain it. I guess it should have been no surprise when two of my top strengthsfinder themes were learner and ideation.



You’re Invited!

I want to invite you to join me for my new 6 session mini-course: Small Group Ministry Basic Training.  Whether you’re on staff as a small group pastor or director or a passionate volunteer dedicating your time and energy to champion small group ministry…this course will help you understand and implement the basics.

Here’s what you’ll gain:

  • Core training in the seven skills every small group pastor or director must develop.
  • Proven strategies that will help you move your ministry in the direction of your preferred future.
  • An in depth understanding of what you must do to build a thriving small group ministry.
  • The tools that will help you identify future opportunities with the most upside.

What’s Included:

  1. Six 75 minute sessions: 60 minutes of content + 15 minutes Q&A (recorded during the live version)
  2. Downloadable outlines (allowing you to capture every detail)
  3. Each session is packed with actionable takeaways
  4. All sessions are downloadable to share with your team
  5. Password-protected site with additional supporting resources.
  6. 100% money back guarantee.  If you’re not completely satisfied…I’ll refund your money.
  7. Regular pricing: $124.95
  8. Add a diagnostic coaching call at a special reduced rate (My regular price for a 60 minute call is $125)
  9. Questions?  Email Me for information.

Registration Options (pulldown)

Frequently Asked Questions (about Small Group Ministry Basic Training)

Here are the most frequently asked questions (and the answers!):

How basic is small group ministry basic training? That is a great question! The content covered in the 6 sessions is basic in the sense that every small group pastor or director must develop this skill set and understand this set of essential strategies. They need to have clarity about the practices that build a thriving small group ministry. And they need the tools that will help them identify the opportunities with the most upside. I believe even fairly experienced practitioners will benefit from this course.

I can’t join the live sessions. Will they be available for me to watch later?  Absolutely! All 6 sessions will be recorded and available for viewing or download at your convenience on my password-protected site.

Can I share the video content with my team? Definitely. Your purchase gives you the right to share the recorded video sessions (as well as the other supporting documents and helps) with your team. However, because there are limited openings for the live sessions, only the recorded sessions will be able to be shared with your team.

Will Small Group Ministry Basic Training be available later?  Like my other short courses, this one will be available later…but the special price of $97.00 increases to $149.95 on May 19th.

I live in another country. Can I take advantage of Small Group Ministry Basic Training? Every session will be a web-based video call and every session will be recorded and uploaded the same day to my password protected site. If the session is live at a time you can join, you should be able to join no matter where you are. If it’s not convenient for you to join live, you can watch the recording later that same day (or early the next day depending on where you are in the world!).

I’m not exactly new to small group ministry. Will it be worth my time (and money) to sign up? You don’t have to be new to small group ministry to benefit from my basic training course! Even if some of what I’m teaching is familiar, the rest may very well be eye-opening and ground-breaking!

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 6.07.41 AMI don’t have a Paypal account. Can I pay with my debit or credit card? Absolutely. When you click the Buy Now button you’ll see the form to the left. Click the link at the bottom of the form that says “Pay with a debit or credit card or Paypal Credit.”

Can I pay for the course with a check? You can pay for the course with a check but enrollment is limited to the first 50 sign-ups. If you need to pay by check, Email Me  to arrange payment.

Do you have a question I haven’t answered?  You can click here to jump into the conversation.

What They’re Saying

“Mark is a small groups guru..he was there to consult LifeChurch.tv in a critical time of small group growth.  He’s one of the best.”  John Davis, LifeChurch.tv

“Mark Howell fuses a heart for relationships and a mind for strategy like few can. His focus on group ministry makes him a valuable asset to church leadership generally and a great advisor to churches individually.”  Will Mancini, Founder of Auxano, Author of Church Unique

“Mark is a supreme blend of incisive strategy, gut-level passion, and inspiration for small group ministry point leaders around the world. [quote]Over the years, the Lord has used Mark’s giving spirit, humble heart, and wisdom earned by experience to help countless leaders and churches become better community-builders.” Reid Smith, Core Director of Adult Ministries, Christ Fellowship

Talk with Mark about Consulting, Coaching or Speaking

“There’s a new small group party game this year called ‘six degrees of Mark Howell,’ in honor of the small group guru who truly gets that the key to community is connection.”  Ron Wilbur, Pastor of Small Group Operations, Saddleback Church

Every time I’m around Mark he challenges my thinking about the inner workings of small group ministry. Not only does he communicate with passion but his practical insights will challenge your thinking and lead to fresh ideas for taking your small group ministry to the next level.  Mac Lake, Chief Launch Officer, The Launch Network

Mark has worked with the best, learned from the best, and is one of the best small group thinkers, consultants, and coaches in the country.  I sincerely mean it when I say that I wish Mark had been my small group ministry coach. I still learn something from him almost everyday when I read his blog.  He has as much knowledge of small group approaches, systems, structures, and just doing ministry in the local church as anyone I know.  I only wish the small group world had the volumes of books that are spinning around in his head.  Rick Howerton, Global Small Group Environmentalist, NavPress

Talk with Mark about Consulting, Coaching or Speaking

Mark Howell is all about strategy. He knows what works and can help you figure out what doesn’t work. Allen White, Brookwood Church

I enthusiastically recommend Mark Howell as a consultant and advisor for small groups ministries at any church, large or small. I have known Mark for approximately 18 years and have had the privilege of working closely with him in the realm of small groups, both in his capacity as small groups pastor at Fellowship of The Woodlands and later as a client of Mark’s in a consulting arrangement. Mark is truly a master at small group strategies, problem solving and next-level thinking. Over time Mark has helped to steer our church through various growth and implementation hurdles, all with great success. Mark knows just how to work with church leaders and volunteers to maximize the potential of this vital ministry at any church. Our highest level group leaders (“Community Leaders”) at Fellowship of The Woodlands have all worked with Mark and he has had a solid impact on their leadership and effectiveness. He is admired and respected by all who know him at Fellowship of The Woodlands. He receives a full endorsement from our entire staff and church. Randy Reeves, Executive Pastor, Woodlands Church

“In ten years of ministry I have never met anyone with more knowledge and passion for small groups than Mark Howell.  Mark is one of the most strategic thinkers in small group ministry today, and the resources he offers will help you reproduce leaders, start new groups, and expand your small groups ministry!  Pastor John Atkinson, Director of Multi Site Ministries, Bay Area Fellowship, Corpus Christi TX

“I can’t say enough about how helpful Mark was in coaching me & my team through our 1st small group campaign. Mark’s conference calls were critical in coaching my senior pastor about the importance of his role in the success of our campaign. That was the key to our success.“  John Chaney, Establish Pastor, Northwoods Community Church

I’ve often heard it said that there are those who do and those who teach.  Mark has the unique ability of doing both well.  We were absolutely thrilled with the training Mark provided.  He stretched and challenged our small groups team.  As a result, our groups are more missional and impacting our local community in ways we hadn’t before.    Thanks Mark!  John Sawyer, Associate Pastor of Multi-Site, Bonaire Baptist Church

“Time and time again Mark has given me a tip or a tweak for our small groups that have proven to be game changers for how we run groups.”  Justin Lathrop, The Oaks Fellowship

“It would be difficult for me to overstate the impact that Mark Howell’s coaching and consulting ministry has had on our church. A year after developing a relationship with Mark, we have more small groups, healthier groups, more and better equipped small group leaders, a multi-tiered small group organization, clearer vision for our small group ministry, and a better understanding of what’s required to be a church of small groups. We think more clearly about discipleship and how to better assimilate people. Beyond that, those of us in senior leadership have learned to think more strategically and deliberately about our overall ministry objectives and we have learned how to make alignment work in our day to day operations. Dr. Will Davis, Jr., Senior Pastor, Austin Christian Fellowship

“Mark is a relevant and strategic small group thought leader. His relational, and encouraging style combined with his first hand small group leadership experience will offer a fun and effective coaching experience. You will gain fresh insights and practical approaches that have helped many  take their small groups ministry to the next level and they will help you do the same.” Randy Cochran, Gateway Church, Southlake, Texas

Talk with Mark about Consulting, Coaching or Speaking

I have played for a lot of coaches in my life but I have found Mark Howell to be one of the best. When our church decided to get serious about small groups we didn’t need good ideas, fancy curriculum, or a boat load of theories, we needed someone to come alongside and walk us through the process of going from a church WITH small groups to a church OF small groups. With Mark’s help we have gone from thirty small groups to over a hundred in just two years. I can’t give him all the credit but I can say I don’t think we would have gotten there without him. Gary Brandenburg, Senior Pastor, Fellowship Bible Church Dallas

“Mark Howell is one of the most strategic thinkers in small group ministry today. His keen insights, creative ideas, and practical coaching will help any pastor or leader focus their small group strategy.” Stephen Blandino, Executive Pastor, Christ Church, Ft. Worth, Texas

“My favorite people are those who have a deep passion for building Biblical community and Mark is one of those people!  He is also one of only a few people in our country who have deep experience in making it happen in a wide variety of ministry settings.”  Gary Foran, Gateway Church

I loved the opportunity to learn from his extensive ministry experience, cutting edge relational network and practical, encouraging style. If you are looking for someone to coach you through launching a small group ministry or taking it to the next level, I highly recommend my friend, Mark Howell.” Boyd Pelley, Co-founder, President, ChurchTeams