Form Missionary Disciples

Forming Missionary Disciples with FORMED

Start a movement in your community to reach every member with the truth and beauty of the faith!

What is a missionary disciple?

A missionary disciple is what we are called to be, and what we are called to help others to become. Jesus commissioned his disciples: 

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them all that I have commanded you.”
– Matthew 28:19-20

Encapsulated in this great commission is the marks of missionary discipleship. A missionary disciple is fruitful—“make disciples of all nations”—and faithful“teaching them all that I have commanded you.” 

Beginning with just one fruitful and faithful missionary disciple, you can put your FORMED subscription to good use by starting a movement in your parish that has the potential to form and empower every member to be the missionary disciple they are called to be.  Here’s how:

  1. Form a single “growth group.” Identify one strong missionary disciple in your parish to prayerfully select five additional members to invite to his or her core “growth group.” It is important that every member understands the group’s intended outcomes:
  • Growth in knowledge of the faith
  • Growth in relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
  • Growth in authentic friendships
  • Growth in spiritual habits
  • Growth in zeal for souls
  • Growth in leadership
  • Growth of new groups
  1. Use a series on FORMED to grow in understanding of the faith together. We recommend starting with Symbolon: Knowing the Faith, a beautiful and systematic presentation of the narrative of our Catholic faith, as handed down to us from Christ through the Apostles and their successors.
  • Have members watch the week’s session on their own time.
  • Meet once a week for meaningful discussion, using the study’s Group Guide as fuel for the conversation.

The use of small-groups allows members to experience faith sharing, transparency, and accountability for their spiritual habits. Research demonstrates that acquiring a mature faith is like learning a new language—you need regular exposure to native speakers and opportunities to engage in conversation.

  1. Multiply the Growth Group. Every member of the original core group is now called to start their own growth group with five more prayerfully chosen individuals.
  • With the support of their original core group (now meeting less frequently), members follow the example of small-group leadership from their own experience.
  • Access to the content and guide materials of series on FORMED give the new leader the support and confidence they need to carry out their mission.

The mustard seed growth group multiples from there: 5 – 25 – 125 – 625 – 3125 – 15,625 – 78,125 – 390,625 – 1,953,125 – 9,765,625 – 48,828,125 – 244,140,625 – 1,220,703,125 – 6,103,515,625.

7 cycles to fill a football stadium.  

14 cycles to reach the population of the world.  

How many cycles would it take to reach the population of your community? 

FORMED content’s truthful teachingcombined with the above growth-group movement, can transform your parish with the two characteristics of missionary disciples: fruitfulness and faithfulness. The multiplication of growth groups is the mark of a fruitful tree, and the solid catechesis found on FORMED assures faithfulness to the truths of the Church, even as the branches become farther and farther removed from the original limb.

Of course, this multiplication strategy looks great on paper, but we are dealing with the human heart and the restraining forces of the world and the devil. However, we can be confident that God “desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim 2:4) and wants that simple mustard seed to become a movement more than we do! Let us be bold in our faith, plant the mustard seed, and let God do the rest!

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