We are so glad you have decided to dive deeper into The Friendship Project by joining a group study! As we can attest, small faith-sharing groups have introduced us to many wonderful new friends and deepened other friendships in both of our lives. Whether you are doing this with two or three girlfriends in your living room or a whole room of women at your parish, we know you will be blessed with new and strengthened relationships. Please know we are praying for you as you journey towards deeper and lasting friendships.
Instructions for Facilitators
We have written this study to be carried out in eight sessions, but feel free use a timetable that works best for your group. You may also wish to add an introductory session for passing out books, introductions, pointing out special features and downloads on the website and discussing the introductory questions provided in the study guide below. Begin each session by watching a short professionally produced video, available free to you here. Each video includes all-new, complementary teachings not included in the book, a chance to get to know us, the authors, and meet our friends we’ve written about in the book through unique interviews. Study questions are provided for group discussion, designed to help the participant process and implement many of the concepts presented throughout the book. Each session also includes a “Going Deeper Into Scripture” section, which allows you to ponder a scripture verse from each chapter and meditate over God’s word together. At the end of each session, we invite your group to offer their prayer intentions and pray together the original prayers included at the end of each session. These prayers are written to help us grow in each virtue and to see these virtues implemented in our friendships.
We always tell our group leaders that there are no right or wrong ways to use this study. We will offer some suggestions below to help you get started, and please know we are always available for questions on our website and social media platforms.
- The Friendship Project book – Bulk pricing available from Ave Maria Press.
- Internet access to stream the free videos for each chapter found here. If you can’t stream the videos, you can purchase the DVD set here.
- Optional: Download the free journal here and “Friendship in Progress: Deepening and Developing Friendships” guide mentioned on the top of page 136 of the book.
- Optional: Download the free “bonus” material sheets:
- Optional: Sign up for our e-mails (go to the bottom of this page for sign-up form) and like us on social media for more materials.
Click on image below for printable PDF.
How to get started:
- Watch the facilitator video here. Visit us online for more instructions on how to lead a group. Sign up for our e-mail list to receive important updates and blog posts from us.
- Decide where and when the group will meet. Whether in your home, a coffee shop, or in a room at your parish—in the morning, afternoon, or evening—find a place, day, and time that works best for your group.
- Promote your study group. Invite your friends, place an announcement in your church bulletin, and share about it on your social media. Download our free invitation to invite your friends and parishioners here. You’ll be surprised by whom God brings into your life to do the study with you.
- Organize refreshments. Hospitality is an important part of a group study. Oftentimes we provide snacks, coffee, and tea for the first session and then ask the other members to take turns providing the refreshments.
- Plan the first meeting. Take a moment to familiarize yourself with the format, making sure you can stream the videos and that you have all your materials ready. If you are doing this in an eight-week session, you will need to have everyone order their books ahead of time (autographed copies will be available through thefriendshipprojectbook.com soon) and read the foreword, introduction, and chapter 1 before the first meeting. If you are distributing the books at the first gathering, you can read through the forward and introduction together and use the optional “Introductory Session” materials in the study guide. Or you can make it a little celebration and take the opportunity to get to know the other women over coffee and snacks. If you’d like to try some icebreakers, visit here for ideas. If providing the free downloads for group members, be sure to make copies or e-mail out the links so the participants can print them.
Additional Opportunity: Friendship by Candlelight
May God Bless your time together deepening and developing friendship!