Church was redefined during the coronavirus pandemic and has adapted to the new climate, with larger scale gatherings and events being stripped back to small groups of six.

Meanwhile, students and young adults have craved connection and community more than ever. As the church, we have been presented with an opportunity like none before: we can strip back how we connect with 20s to 30s to reflect the heart of discipleship.

In Acts 2, we see the early church spring into action: They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 

And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.” (Acts 2:42 – 47)


The simplicity of the early church established healthy rhythms and foundations for believers: generosity, prayer, thankfulness, worship, an outward focus.

Whether in groups of six, 12 or 72, the believers shared all things in common. They surrendered their possession and lived lives of generosity. They learned to worship in all circumstances. They were the original small group.

Acts 2 shows us that small groups are not a new idea. The church began with a small group, and even now, with or without restrictions in place, we get to learn the lessons of the early church. Ciara, a student in Bath, shares her experience of coming to faith and joining a small group at while at university: My first student small group was on Zoom. I was so nervous because I didn’t really know anyone, but I was put into a breakout room with two other people; one of them messaged me straight after the session inviting me to hang out. 

That was when I knew that I’d found my place. People recognised me and made the effort to spend time with me. My small group is challenging and encouraging at the same time and helps me to grow in my faith. If I’m struggling or wavering a bit, I’ll go to the small group and leave being so on fire for Jesus again. I feel so much freer having a relationship with Jesus because my identity and worth are in Him, no matter what people think of me.”

We can rethink the norms and welcome young adults into true community, knowing that as we do, we will welcome people home and help them to know their identity in Christ.

If you’re not sure how to lead a missional small group, check out Fusion’s Small Groups Resources for training and equipping in leading unmissable small groups.

This blog is part of 7 Conversations, a suite of interactive, integrated resources for leaders in local settings seeking to understand young adults and bring them into a rock-solid relationship with Jesus.

7 conversations your church needs to have to reach young adults

7 conversations your church needs to have to reach young adults

A suite of resources to help your church reach, engage and disciple 20s and 30s Find out more