English-speaking church in Eindhoven

Cell Leadership. Leading well… and how everyone can be good cell group members

Cell Leaders – Serving as Good Shepherds

At a cell leaders training a while ago cell leaders and potential leaders considered what was involved in leading a cell. Looking to the model of Jesus rather than the world we thought about what was involved in being a ‘good shepherd’ to a cell group. We took the functions of a good shepherd as described in one of Francis’ sermons, to gather, feed and protect, and thought about how these functions could be fulfilled by the good shepherds of our cell groups. We came up with the following lists of what was involved in each area of service.

How Cell Members Can Support Cell Leaders and Grow

The teaching also focussed on the need to pass on cell leadership to other members of the group. This means that it is not just the leaders’ task to do what is in the lists below but also something that every cell member can grow into doing too. And cell members can also support their leaders in being good shepherds of their groups if they know and think about how these functions happen in their groups.


  • Gathering a cell around a common activity (e.g. service or hobby), a common focus (e.g. particular study material, language or prayer style), a common stage of life (e.g. having small children, being older or being newly married) or just having circumstances in common (being able to meet at a certain time or place)
  • Welcome and hospitality are important – shaping the environment with sufficient comfortable chairs, and providing good food
  • Inviting newcomers to church if they fit the group and inviting friends
  • Reminding members to gather by email, phone or personal contact and providing them with ongoing information about the cell life
  • Engaging cell members in conversation


  • Providing good resources for opening the Bible and prayer that fit the group well
  • Keeping the focus on Christian feeding
  • Ensuring a good balance between Bible, sharing and prayer so none of these activities is focussed on while neglecting the others
  • Teaching
  • Listening to and looking at the group to discern what is needed
  • Sharing personally and encouraging others in personal sharing
  • Visiting and relating to group members, and co-ordinating the group in meeting each others’ needs
  • Leading people to get ‘food’ for themselves
  • Delegating responsibility
  • Attending training sessions


  • Praying for the group
  • Looking after people on the fringes of the group
  • Being part of a cell nucleus rather than trying to do it on one’s own
  • Keeping connected as a leader to others and the wider church (TCE) and not becoming isolated
  • Ensuring a good balance between Bible, sharing and prayer so none of these activities is focussed on while neglecting the others
  • Focussing the group
  • Giving each person a chance to speak
  • Balancing individual and group needs
  • Practising personal pastoral care and accountability
  • Dealing with false teaching or misguided thinking firmly and clearly (person-to-person or in the group as necessary)
  • Moving the group forward in its vision and functioning so as to avoid stagnation
  • For leaders to pass these tasks on to their cell group members and help them to grow each group needs to talk about what is involved from time to time. As leaders become aware of how they do these things, and how they learnt how to do them, they can share these with their group members and teach them how to do them too. As you pass leadership on your own leadership grows. Cell groups are about growth. In this way both the leaders and cell members grow personally and spiritually in all the skills necessary for the health of our cell groups.

I pray you consider carefully what your part is in contributing to the healthy life of the cell group you are in and how you can grow through this.

If you are not yet in a cell group and would like to be please contact me – Barbara Noordanus at church or email.