Chalice Circle Meetings
Chalice Circles consist of seven to ten people, large enough to promote group interaction, but small enough to allow intimacy and equal participation. Groups are always open to new members as long as the group has no more than ten people.
Elements of a Chalice Circle Gathering
Each Chalice Circle session plan is designed to permit us to connect with one another more deeply and to focus on the topic of the meeting. The format always includes:
- Opening Words and Chalice Lighting
- Focus of the Meeting
- Closing Words and Extinguishing the Chalice
Making connection with others is easier when we understand how they would like to be treated. During the first few meetings of a Chalice Circle, members will develop a covenant — a list of ground rules — that define the ways they commit to interact with one another.
Twice a year each group will engage in service to the congregation or to the larger community.
Focus or Content for Chalice Circles
The focus of each meeting is a topic that serves as a springboard into reflection on deeper issues of who we are and what gives our lives meaning. However, the focus of a Chalice Circle is always secondary to opportunities for deepening relationships among group members.
Meeting Times and Places
Each group meets often enough for group members to create meaningful connections: at least once a month; twice a month is strongly encouraged. Groups meet for about two hours, long enough to follow the format and engage in deep listening. Groups normally meet in members’ homes. By sharing our homes with others, we share our stories and a little bit about who we are. However, since some groups may have special needs, church space is also occasionally available as a meeting place.
Examples of Available Session Plans
- Getting to Know You
- Sharing Our History
- Gratitude as a Spiritual Practice
- Asking for Help
- Being Alone
- Exploring Gandhi’s Non-Violence
- Giving and Receiving Joy
- If You Could Invite 3 People
- Making Peace with Unhappiness
- Once Upon a Time
- Our Misbehaviors
- Our Place in Nature
- Questions at the End of the Day Part I
- Radical Hospitality
- Spiritual Experiences
- Terror and War
- Those Who Have Touched Our Lives
- What Part Do Traditions Play in Your Beliefs
- Saying Goodbye