Follow-up

Here are some tips for what you can offer guests as a follow-up to Sycamore as you get near the end of your course. And some reflections on how to move forward together as a team.

At the end of the programme, at the last session:

  • You might want to have a voluntary sign-up sheetso people can be told about upcoming events etc; or a post-Sycamore Facebook group, etc. Make sure you are GDPR compliant
  • You might want to have something planned in your parish/chaplaincy/school that will act as a specific follow up to Sycamorefor those who wish, e.g. An enquiry group for those who are interested in more formal learning about Christianity after Sycamore; or another video series with discussion groups; or to invite anyone interested to join the RCIA group in the parish when it starts and to have some publicity prepared.
  • Or instead of (or as well as) putting on extra post-Sycamore groups, you might prefer to make people aware of the various normal timetabled activities in the parish/chaplaincy/school that are taking place over the next few weeks and months– the worship and liturgy; prayer groups; the RCIA group; bible study; social events; etc. Letting people know about the ordinary life of the community and letting them know they are welcome to join in.
  • As a bridge between the Sycamore programme and the life of the community, you could have a handout with all the activities on; or a website address that makes it very clear what is happening; or even put on a follow-up event like a parish fair where members of different groups share what they are doing.
  • Think about having a social event as a reunion after Sycamore. Think about building on any friendships and relationships that have grown out of Sycamore; not a formal ‘contact list’, but keeping up with natural friendships that have grown, between guests, and between guests and leaders.

As a team:

  • Make sure you pray together after the last session…
  • It is good to have an evening or even a day of reflection and review when the programme has finished, in the two or three weeks after, before it becomes a distant memory.
  • To pray together, in thanksgiving for all that has happened. To pray for all the guests and all the different people involved.
  • To review in some depth how the whole process has gone: what has worked well; what has been difficult; what have been the personal highs and lows for each person involved; what have been the more objective/collective highs and lows that you need to learn from.
  • To offer all this to God. To leave everything in his hands, especially the life and faith of the guests; and the whole work and fruit of Sycamore.
  • To learn from all this. To make notes and begin to make practical decisions about how to follow up; whether it is worth doing again.
  • If it is, then to begin planning – what have we learnt? What would we do differently next time?
  • If it is not worth doing again, then what else should we do for evangelisation in our community?
  • It is all God’s work. He calls people to know him in so many different ways. Evangelisation is not us trying to engineer someone’s conversation; it is us trying to be open to God’s will as far as we know it, to respond to his call to share our faith and invite others to faith; to scatter seeds; to offer his Word. He will bring whatever fruit he wishes.
  • Be brave, be courageous, take a risk; but leave everything in his hands.