Join the NC Conference Media Center’s Study Harder Challenge! Your group is invited to expand your circle of influence and try something new by studying resources that apply any of 12 characteristics that will help you think outside the box. Read more about the Study Harder Challenge and download your worksheet.
Challenge: Change Format (Add or Remove DVD)
Does your group require a study to have a DVD component? Has your group never watched a DVD when you meet? Here’s your opportunity to try something different.
We have listed recommended book studies that are good ones to try if you are used to a DVD. We know some folks are not big readers, so these studies make it so everyone can participate without even having to read. Freeing up the time spent watching the DVD, will allow for more group connection and discussion.
We are also listing DVD studies that are great to start with if you have never done one. These might have short videos that do not take away much class time, or really interesting videos that enhance the lesson with visuals such as the Holy Land or biblical dramatizations. Don’t have access to a DVD player? Borrow one, bring a laptop, or meet in a different place. Try something new!
Discipleship Ministries Booklets. Discipleship Ministries of The United Methodist Church has published free booklets that would make for quick yet fruitful studies in small groups. The short text can be read allowed and discussed. Some booklets include group study materials. These booklets can be borrowed from the Media Center or downloaded and copied.
- Reimagining Evangelism: Bible Study Guide
- A Missionary Mindset: Lessons Learned from E. Stanley Jones
- How to Have a Courageous Conversation
- Family Faith Formation: Living with the Holy
- Discovering Your Spiritual Gifts
LifeGuide Bible Studies. This long-running bible study series takes participants deep into scripture with thoughtful discussion questions. There is no reading that participants must do on their own. All is explored during the group session. The Media Center has the titles listed below, but many more are available from Cokesbury.
- Fruit of the Spirit
- James: Faith That Works
- John’s Letters: Discovering Genuine Christianity
- Psalms: Prayers of the Heart
- The Story of Scripture: The Unfolding Drama of the Bible
- The Messiah: The Texts Behind Handel’s Masterpiece
Converge Bible Studies. These UMC-endorsed studies from Abingdon Press discuss relevant topics of interest. There is a short reading for each session, but it is not too much of a burden for non-readers. The studies are designed for group interaction with a simple format, and the scripture text is printed in the book. The Media Center only has two of the titles as examples, but the full series is available through Cokesbury.
Favorite Bible Passages. This classic series endures because of its insights and effectiveness in a group setting. There is a teacher’s book and a student book, but the required weekly reading is only 2-3 pages. These studies are UMC-endorsed.
The Entertainment Ministry. These booklets may be reproduced for everyone in your group. The short readings relate to pop culture in television, art, movies, or writings. They provide a fun and interesting diversion with new insights on faith and culture.
- Seeing Jesus: the Visions, the Paintings and the Films that Shaped How We See Christ
- The Gospel of Superman: How the Superhero was Based on the Savior
- Saint Valentine’s Day: How the Life of the Saint Illustrates the Four Loves Found in the Bible
- The First Thanksgiving: How the Pilgrims Became Missionaries, In Their Own Words
- Saint Nicholas: How the Christian Saint Became Santa Claus
Rob Fuquay. Rev. Fuquay is a United Methodist minister in Indianapolis. His study The God We Can Know was filmed on location in the Holy Land. Participants can actually connect the biblical verses on who Jesus says He is with the places where he said it. This same approach is followed in his study on Paul where the videos show places where Paul lived out his ministry. Fuquay’s other study on racing signals is interesting as well, and his presentation style is friendly and relatable. Printable study guides are included on each DVD-ROM.
- The God We Can Know: Exploring the “I Am” Sayings of Jesus DVD
- The God We Can Know: Exploring the “I Am” Sayings of Jesus Book
- Which Way, Lord? Exploring Your Life’s Purpose in the Journeys of Paul DVD
- Which Way, Lord? Exploring Your Life’s Purpose in the Journeys of Paul Book
- Take the Flag: Following God’s Signals in the Race of Your Life DVD
- Take the Flag: Following God’s Signals in the Race of Your Life Book
Ray Vander Laan. That the World May Know series is well-known for its videos where author Ray Vander Laan takes participants to various sites throughout the Holy Land. Each of the 15 multi-session studies in the series covers a different biblical topic. The studies do not need to be completed in order. Each study includes a Discovery Guide packed full of additional study materials including maps, but these are not required reading. Click the link below to see all of the titles in the series.
Adam Hamilton. Rev. Adam Hamilton pastors the largest United Methodist congregation in the United States, and his DVD studies are by far the most popular studies among our churches. A good one to start with is Revival: Faith as Wesley Lived It where Rev. Hamilton travels to England and shows the places that were important to the life of John Wesley. The Media Center has many other DVD studies by Rev. Hamilton. You can find them all by searching our online catalog for “Adam Hamilton.” A few additional recommendations are listed below. All of his studies include a DVD, leader guide, and book.
- Revival: Faith as Wesley Lived It
- Unafraid: Living with Courage and Hope in Uncertain Times
- Moses: In the Footsteps of the Reluctant Prophet
- The Call: The Life and Message of the Apostle Paul
People Who Met Jesus. This award-winning series features short films that dramatize events in Jesus’ life. Each DVD contains 6-8 short videos and a study guide.
- People Who Met Jesus, Series 1
- People Who Met Jesus, Series 2
- Parables of Jesus
- The Path: Bethlehem to Golgotha
NOOMA. This series of 24 10-15 minute films was very popular in our churches for years after its release, and if your group has not seen it, now is a great time to give them a try. Each film tackles difficult questions of faith with a modern, creative style often associated with the series creator, Rob Bell. Many groups have experienced rich discussions after viewing the films and using the discussion guides.
The Entertainment Ministry. In addition to the booklets mentioned above, The Entertainment Ministry also provides, and is best known for, their bible studies based on classic television and movies. The Mayberry Bible Study Series, based on The Andy Griffith Show, is most popular with our North Carolina folks. Each session uses a full episode to examine a virtue or vice in light of scripture. The study guides for this series may be reproduced for everyone in your group. You can find a complete list by searching our online catalog for “Skelton” (the author’s last name). A few recommendations are listed below. Most of these offer 2-3 additional volumes in the series.
- The Mayberry Bible Study Series
- The Beverly Hillbillies
- The Lucy Show
- Gilligan’s Island & the Seven Deadly Sins
Request These Resources
These resources can be borrowed by anyone associated with the North Carolina Conference of The United Methodist Church, free of charge. We can even mail them to you! All you need to do is fill out the Resource Request Form.