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Giving Hope and Encouragement to All Men

Start Your Own Roundtable

The Roundtable Fellowship

A fellowship to assist Christian men in addressing critical issues of life, marriage, and family


As iron sharpens iron,  so one man sharpens another.    Prov. 27:17


Each Saturday, between 30 to 50 men gather around a roundtable at Christ Memorial Church in Poulsbo, Washington, to address issues confronting Christian men. Other Roundtable fellowships have been started in Port Orchard and East Bremerton (Sylvan Way Baptist); Yuma, Arizona (approximately 30-50 men meet each Saturday morning there); Idaho, and Australia.


The following are format and suggestions for starting a Roundtable Fellowship like the one at CMC.


Meeting format:  (1 ˝ hours)

  • Opening prayer

  • Jump-start scripture and questions, like ‘What does this say to us as men today?’  The Holy Spirit will lead the discussion in some surprising directions.

  •  Issues facing men who have come to the meeting

  •   Closing prayer  




          Fellowship facilitator: The facilitator needs to be a leader and have a compassion for other men.  The facilitator will select a man at the meeting to open in prayer.  (We like to stand for the opening and closing prayers at CMC.) 


In advance of the meeting, the facilitator will contact someone to bring the jump-start scripture and question(s) for the next meeting.  A reminder call is necessary the day before the meeting.  This first contact is often done after the close of the previous meeting.  The facilitator does not ask for any specific topic or scripture – the individual being asked brings what he senses the Holy Spirit leading him to. The facilitator is not aware of the scripture until the man shares it in the meeting.


After the opening prayer, the facilitator will call for the jump-start scripture and question.  The men like to bring the jump-start scriptures.  This gives all a chance to start the meeting and raise the challenge question that is meant to engage the men in open discussion considering, “ How does this apply to us today?”


At approximately the halfway point, the facilitator asks for issues of the heart to be brought up that individuals may have come with that need to be addressed. There are always issues. Men are asked to pray for those with needs – immediately.


As the meeting winds down, any loose ends are addressed by the facilitator. Then he will call for a man to close the meeting in prayer.


Occasionally the facilitator will begin the meeting with a scripture, aimed to prompt men to share. When this format is used, we usually simply proceed around the table to anyone who has a need or an issue. By beginning the meeting like this helps ensure that all men have had a chance to share and be prayed for.


        Leadership team: The facilitator should select a core group of men to gather around him to share in this ministry.  This group could be from three to six men.  They can assist in duties such as:

        Opening the church, starting coffee, setting up tables and chairs, the sign-

        up of men to bring donuts or fruit and making a reminder call the day before the

        meeting, picking up the offering basket and dispersing it, meeting with the

        facilitator 20 minutes before the meeting to pray for the meeting and the

        guidance of the Holy Spirit.



        Start on time, and end the meeting on time—so those that need to can leave.  Then be sure to stick around to hear and minister to those who still need to talk and share.  (We found Saturday 7:30 to 9:00 A.M. to be our best time at CMC)


        Coffee and donuts aren’t essential, but they are nice, along with some fresh fruit.  Have guys sign up and spread out the responsibility.  An offering basket is set out with the food to offset the expenses – those that brought donuts or fruit can reimburse themselves. 


       Keep the configuration of the tables round.  The shape of the overall seating arrangement is important.  The arrangement tells men that we are all peers – there is not a leader, there is no front or back.  There is one body; all are important members; no one is more important than another.  The facilitator’s job is not to lead, per se, nor to dominate, just to give some gentle direction to keep the men engaged.  Jesus is the Head of the table.  The Spirit is free to touch any man and move him to share or respond.  Ministry from the table members can come from anyone. 


        Confidentiality in the room is very important.  Whatever is shared at the table stays within the room, unless a man says that it can be taken and shared outside to others.  This is critical for building trust and relationship among the men.  (To our knowledge, this has never been violated since the beginning of the Roundtable at CMC.)  The men are free to share outside the Roundtable the subjects that were discussed; loving our wives, pornography, anger, forgiveness, our authority in the home, child discipline, etc.----but no details, no names, not who was prayed with and never what someone said.


       The jump-start scripture should be brief, generally under six verses, and often only one.  Some guys like to turn it into a devotion or mini-sermon, but this does not work nearly so well.  The facilitator shouldn’t necessarily try to stop it, but tell the guys who are going to share,  “This is not a sermon, not a devotion, but a scripture that can challenge and stir the hearts of men.”  The one bringing the scripture should add a few comments, then raise the challenge or the question.  If the one with the scripture does not raise a challenge question, the facilitator must trust the Lord to give him that challenge for the group.


        The facilitator always needs to try to involve more men than just those who like to talk and every group has some of those.  This can be frustrating for the facilitator.  He must be sensitive, not domineering, make some mistakes, but grow by them.  Let the table know we are all in this together for the purpose of maturing in the Lord.

 Be open to hurting men and ready to pray immediately!  The meeting is not a prayer meeting per se –but prayer better be happening a lot.  It is very important that the meeting never get turned into a social gathering, a time to review current events, or even a Bible study.  Men come for all kinds of reasons, but some come because they are hurting—big time!  (We have seen this over and over again at CMC).  Men need a place to share their concerns and fears, even confess their sins.  The facilitator may see that one of the quiet guys seems to want to say something.  He’ll ask him how it is going and if he has anything to share.  An avalanche of need and some beautiful ministry often follows.  Prayer is the key.  Believe God for miracles, healings, deliverance and goodness.


        Open the Roundtable to other men in the community and their pastors.


       If pastors come, don’t work them!  Let them be spectators, at least at the first.  Some pastors don’t want to come until the men have developed a trustful relationship with each other.


        When a need surfaces and the men begin to pray for someone, the facilitator should try to stimulate “popcorn” prayers, rather than have one or two prayer warriors give ten minute prayers.  “Popcorn” prayers are one sentence (or very short) prayers from different men.  It’s amazing how the Holy Spirit will work through twelve men to cover all that the prayer warriors would have covered.  It may take a little more time, but the results are terrific.  Men begin to think they also can become a prayer warrior.


       Hold a breakfast approximately quarterly or twice yearly and invite a pastor from another church to speak. Ask him to share on the topic "What is God saying to men in this hour?" (not that God changes His message, but what are vital issues confronting men today and how does God want us to respond) Bless the pastor with a monetary gift.


       Fasten your seat belt and get ready for the Lord to use this ministry in the lives of men.