>>stonecroft >> stonecroft
The Guide’s responsibility is to lead and guide the Bible
Study. As the Guide serves they have the opportunity to impact their
community by introducing others to a personal relationship with
Jesus Christ. They also have the opportunity to identify other potential
Guides from within their group that can be nurtured and encouraged
to start their own Stoncroft Bible Study Outreach Group once they
have completed the Introductory Trinity Series and the Guide training.
A Stonecroft Bible Study Guide:
• Prays regularly for each person who will be in the Bible
• Begins the Bible study lesson with prayer.
• A Stonecroft Bible Study Guide is trained by a Coordinator
to facilitate Stonecroft Bible Studies; stays informed and equipped
on ways to improve skills as a Guide and facilitator.
• The Guide complies with Stonecroft Bible Studies policies
and informs participants on how to be an effective and unified group
by following the Guidelines referred to in this introductory video.
• She prepares for the group by reviewing the Study Book
and Guidebook materials; she makes her group aware of the importance
of confidentiality in the group and keeps the group focused on study
questions and Scripture.
• A Stonecroft Bible Study Guide provides opportunities for
study participants to be informed about Stonecroft Ministries and
aware of the local opportunities for them to connect.
• She seeks to point participants to Scripture to find answers
to faith questions. Discussion is encouraged only about what the
Bible says, rather than focusing on what church doctrines or traditions
• She seeks to avoid distractions and disruptions stemming
from discussions about doctrinal, social, or political topics on
which people and/or churches disagree.
A GUIDES QUALIFICATIONS
1. The Guide must have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ
2. Be passionate about the transforming power of God’s Word
3. Agrees with Stonecroft Bible Study policies and guidelines
4. Communicates and works well with others
5. Has a desire for people to know God’s Word and to grow
spiritually as Christians.
INTERVIEWING POTENTIAL BIBLE STUDIES GUIDES
SELECTION OF GUIDES
The Pastors (initially from the Africa Training Bible School) who
were trained to be Guides will identify local Guides thoughtfully,
prayerfully and strategically from their local church. Selecting
key people as Guides in the communities in their region and will
provide opportunities for greater expansion of Stonecroft Bible
It is important to look for the qualities in a Guide that would
correspond to the positional responsibilities described in this
The following guidelines are helpful when considering individuals
to serve as Guides:
1. Pray prior to meeting with the candidate, asking God to give
both you and the candidate wisdom and discernment regarding this
2. Arrange a time to get acquainted with each other. Be prepared
to acquaint them with Stonecroft Bible Studies and Stonecroft Ministries,
3. Focus on the areas during the interview that are included on
the Stonecroft Bible Studies Application Form.
o Give information on Stonecroft Ministries—refer the Guide
• This Stonecroft Africa Bible Study Handbook.
• Visit Stonecrofts corporate web site stonecroft.org for
o Ask the Guide to briefly state how she trusted in Jesus Christ
alone for her Salvation and give Bible verses which confirm her
o Ask the Guide to describe how she would answer questions about
the identity of Jesus Christ.
o Enquire of the Guide what motivated her to consider serving with
Stonecroft Bible Studies.
o Check to see her willingness to work with people with varied
beliefs, cultural, and denominational backgrounds
o Ask the Guide about her other activities she is involved in and
what experience she has in studying God’s Word and any experience
in guiding a Bible Study.
o Ensure she is familiar with Policies for Stonecroft Bible Studies
and Statement of Faith.
Potential Guides need to read and understand Stonecroft’s
policies concerning distractions
Responsibilities of the Pastor who will become the Coordinator
• Obtains the completed Guide Application Form from the potential
• Carefully reads the completed application to gain assurance
that the Guides testimony is clear.
• Prayerfully consider asking the candidate a few more questions
about her relationship with Jesus Christ, such as:
1. “I’d like to hear more about your journey with God.
What role has Christ played?”
2. If a Stonecroft Bible Study participant asked you how they could
be in a relationship with Jesus Christ, how would you respond?
3. What is your understanding of the Gospel, and how would you
You may want to consider reading through the Would You Believe It?
booklet with the Guide.
Schedule a time to train the candidate as a Guide. Use the following
1. The Stonecroft Africa Bible Studies Handbook
If they have never experienced a Stonecroft study, you will need
to work together through a few of the lessons in the ‘Who
is Jesus? or 'What is God Like?" series, so they better understand
what is involved.
The Pastor or Coordinator keeps the application on their files.
Remember that not everyone is ready to be a Guide. If you discern
that a potential Guide is not able to focus on the core vision of
Stonecroft Bible Studies and avoid controversial, social, and political
issues, gently encourage her away from guiding the study; instead
encourage her to participate in a study. You may want to discuss
this with a regional leader or her Pastor.
After completing the Guide Training process, contact, by email,
your African Stonecroft Regional Leader with the new Guide information.
The Stonecroft Regional Leader in Africa, Pastor David Akondowi,
will contact Stonecroft Ministry Support America with this information.
He may do this by e-mailing: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please include the Guide’s complete mailing address, telephone
number(s), and e-mail address as seen on the Bible Studies Information
Upon Stonecroft’s receipt of the information, the newly selected
Guide will receive a welcome e-mail, which will be translated into
her native tongue, confirming her new position. Guides will also
be part of the network of volunteers and can receive Stonecroft’s
e-newsletter in English, and be able to access the Leaders OnLine,
and other English resources from Stonecroft Ministries website.
Reporting your new Guides will assure they are identified as leaders.
We consider every person who is involved valuable to your local
ministry and part of reaching our world for Jesus Christ.
EQUIPPING STONECROFT GUIDES:
Well-trained Guides are invaluable to the experience of people exploring
faith, as well as those who have been in Bible studies for many
Many Coordinators send out a newsletter from time to time to keep
in touch. Conference calls, if available by Skype, or other social
media networks are also a great resource to keep the Guides networked
in your region.
Coordinators should plan a few times a year for Bible Study Guides
to get together for mutual support and encouragement, as well as
equipping in how to effectively facilitate Stonecroft Bible Studies.
Much is experienced through networking, prayer, sharing common concerns,
as well as learning people skills and how to respond to challenging
Training times for Guides can be planned with a seasonal eg Christmas
gathering or fun theme eg someone’s Birthday or special Bank
Here are some ideas to consider for Guide training events:
• A special time of prayer and fellowship
• A Scripture challenge or devotional, encouraging and thanking
them for serving
• Introduction of Guides and a sharing of positive results
in their studies
Time of training: i.e. how to share your testimony, multiplying
the outreach in your community, introducing Stonecroft to the local
church or community service organization. This also should be a
time of learning from each other. Have Guides share how they invite
participants, the most difficult situations they have encountered,
and where they have seen God at work in the participants’
lives. End with encouragement and a time to pray for one another.
DIRECTIONS FOR GUIDING:
Outreach – The studies provide an effective
way to share Salvation through Jesus Christ with others.
We are looking at promoting the Stonecroft Bible Studies initially
through the 280 churches in the Africa Training Bible School (ATBS)
in Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia and DR Congo as well as the Hope Community
Centre, Kampala, Uganda.
We are believing God to also combine it with a Stonecroft Women’s
Empowerment Program (SWEP) that you will learn about in more detail
later. The women in SWEP will start the Sponsorship program by going
through the Stonecroft Bible Study Outreach Trinity Series starting
with ‘What is God Like? then ‘Who is Jesus’ and
lastly “Where is the Holy Spirit?”
On completing SWEP they will be encouraged to become Guides, using
the Africa Training video as part of their training, as well as
this Handbook enabling them to start a Stonecroft Bible Study Outreach
Group in their home when they return to their villages. Or their
local church, subject to permission from their Pastor, inviting
friends, family, co-workers and neighbours.
Discipleship – New or mature Christians
can learn more about God and grow in their relationship with Him.
The studies explain how to apply Biblical principles to everyday
situations. Many other Study Books are available with Guidebooks
and these will also be translated into the local language. The Africa
Training Bible School will be using these Bible Studies as part
of their curriculum. For example:
So what makes Stonecroft Bible Studies different from most other
Bible studies on the market?
• The studies are designed to be used with a New Testament
that is readily available through the Bible Society in Tanzania,
their mandate is to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ by translating,
producing, distributing and encouraging people to use the Scriptures
in their day-to-day lives. The Swahili Union Version is available
from the Bible Society located in Central Tanzania in the Dodoma
Region. The page numbers however have been removed in the Swahili
translation of the Bible Study and a Bible Handbook has been created
in cases where the participants do not have a Bible of their own.
• The studies are written in an easy-to-use format for those
new to Bible Study.
• Remember the Guide is not a Bible teacher but is learning
along with those who attend the Bible Study.
Stonecroft Bible Studies are easy to lead.
Notes to the Guide are enclosed in a dotted border in the Guidebook,
they are not to be read aloud.
Texts which is printed inside a box is also in the Study Book.
These portions are to be read aloud by study participants.
A series of dots (.....) indicates that the Guide is to allow the
group to participate by answering a question, reading a Bible verse
or discussing the topic.
Bold type Bible references followed by 5 dots, signifies a verse
that is to be read aloud during the study by a member of the group.
When a reference is in regular print, it is either too long to
read in the group or it is not required to obtain the answer.
PRIOR TO THE BIBLE STUDY:
A few essentials –
Become approved as a Stonecroft Guide by completing the Stonecroft
Bible Studies application form that has been translated into Swahili
for our Tanzania applicants.
We want to know your church affiliation and position.
We want to be sure that after reading the Stonecroft Ministries
Policies and Statement of Faith that you do not have any concerns.
Materials needed for the study:
1. The Introductory Trinity Study Books have been translated into
Swahili can be obtained from the ATBS Headquartes, Mbeya, Tanzania.
2. Guidebooks can be obtained from the ATBS Headquartes, Mbeya,
3. The Swahili Union Bible can be obtained from the Tanzania Bible
4. Would You Believe? Has also been translated into Swahili and
can be obtained from the ATBS Headquartes, Mbeya, Tanzania.
5. Information cards have also been translated into Swahili and
can be obtained from the ATBS Headquartes, Mbeya, Tanzania.
6. Guide’s Stonecroft Bible Study Application Form can be
obtained from the ATBS Headquartes, Mbeya, Tanzania
Find a convenient location for your Bible Study. Consider having
the study in a home, church hall, school hall on a Saturday or even
outdoors under the shade of a large Tropical tree.
GUIDE PREPARATION PRIOR TO THE STUDY:
Complete the lesson by writing your answers in the Study Book before
reading the Guidebook. This will help you understand the thought
process others will go through to reach the needed responses.
• Practice reading the lesson aloud, if possible. Underline
the key words and phrases that will help you present the lesson
to the group. Under normal circumstances lessons should not exceed
1 – 1 1/2 hours particularly if the Bible Study is part of
the Stonecroft Women’s Empowerment Program (SWEP) because
the ladies will have to leave and start their Vocational Training
• At the same time as SWEP students are enjoying their Bible
Study their child will be attending their PowerClub to be trained
in the Ways of God through Kids in Ministry International along
with other children’s ministry including Kids Evangelism and
• Initially the locations will be:
Tanzania – Africa Training Bible School (ATBS) – Mbeya
Uganda – Hope Community Centre, Kampala, Uganda.
Malawi – Africa Training Bible School (ATBS) – Uluwa
and Vulwa, Malawi
• Pray for those who will be attending the Bible Study.
DURING THE STUDY:
Always start the lesson with prayer. If someone voices a request,
suggest that the group write it on the Prayer Request page at the
back of the Study Book as a reminder to pray during the week
If the request is urgent, include it in your opening prayer.
Remember that at the first session of each series eg ‘Who
is Jesus?’ each person will write her answers in the Study
Book during the first lesson. For the remainder of that study encourage
the group to complete the lesson prior to the meeting filling in
the answers in their Study Book before coming to class.
Read and present the information in the Guide book in a conversational
way, while maintaining eye contact. The Guide is studying and learning
with the rest of the group; you don’t have to be an expert
in the Bible.
The Guide sets the tone and pace of the study by:
• Starting and ending on time, remember many of these Bible
Studies will be in conjunction with the Stonecroft Women’s
Empowerment Program, so the mums will have to leave and go onto
their Vocational Training Program afterwards.
• Use the Guidebook and Swahili Union Bible or the relevant
translated Bible in other countries, no other supplemental material
• Encourage everyone to participate in the discussion and
seeing that no one dominates. Be kind as you encourage others to
participate without upsetting the person that is dominating the
• Keep the focus on the study of Jesus Christ, not doctrinal,
political or social issues. Doctrinal questions are best handled
in another setting.
Always look for those in your group who would make good Guides for
As a Guide be an example of discretion. Discourage people from
discussing things that should be kept confidential such as domestic
disputes. Apart from the group setting, pray with them and encourage
them to seek appropriate Godly counsel.
After the Stonecroft Women’s Empowerment Program is completed,
any potential Guides should be identified and trained, using this
Handbook and the Training Videos if available, enabling the qualified
students to return to their homes taking the Stonecroft Bible Studies
with them into their village and local churches.
Ask participants to think of people who they can invite to another
Bible Study. Encourage them to begin praying for each other by name.
• If you are unable to lead the Bible Study for any reason,
an approved and trained substitute should be called upon to take
• You do not hand your Guide book over to another class member.