Alpha Tips: What does Holy Trinity Brompton offer After Alpha?
We have tried various follow-up studies for Alpha grads, but have had mixed results. What do they use at Holy Trinity Brompton?
At Holy Trinity Brompton (HTB), the birth place of the Alpha course, all Alpha guests are invited into mid-size groups called Pastorates. These groups are made up of approximately 15-35 people and meet most often in homes.
This is where people get to know one another, support one another, learn discipleship together and basically do life together. HTB has found it rare for Alpha guests to be ready for small groups. These mid-size groups work well for assimilating new people into the life of the church.
HTB found that these mid-size groups were less threatening, created a culture of “come and see,” and had a similar feel to what they had been experiencing on Alpha.
Here are a few of the distinctive elements of a Pastorate:
- Openness to new people - Pastorates allow for more of a drop-in culture. A pastorate doesn’t require a long term commitment up front. You can come and go more easily and try out several if you wish.
- Pastorates allow for a less intimidating atmosphere for new people - There are more people, and therefore, more room to get “lost in the crowd.” Yet it’s small enough for plenty of chances to meet others, connect, get acquainted and make new friends.
- A place to discover and grow spiritual gifts – Plenty of opportunities to serve in worship leading, hosting, teaching or praying.
- Hospitality – Much like a fruitful Alpha course, it is important to create a warm, “we are so glad you are here” environment for a Pastorate.