At CBOQ we desire to foster a culture of discipleship. 

Jesus made discipleship central to his mission and work. He made disciples throughout his public ministry. And before Jesus went to the Father, He told His disciples that discipleship was to be their priority (Matthew 28:18-20). The church received clear instructions from Jesus to make disciples of all nations. Yet, many pastors and church leaders struggle to make disciples in the local church context. 

“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Matthew 28:18-20

Building a Discipleship Culture

Are you feeling lost or stuck post-Covid?  You are not alone!  
  • Many churches are not sure who is in their congregation.   
  • Many congregants are questioning their reason for participating in church.  
  • New people to your church are longing to belong.   
  • Many pastors and ministry leaders feel stuck and lack clear direction as to the future.   
How do we find our way to creating or re-creating a culture in our churches based on discipleship and community? 

The*Discipleship Culture Team seeks to partner with you to equip leaders to develop discipleship in your church through a groups model.  The team is comprised of discipleship, community, and small group experts. 

The Discipleship Culture Cohort is for Pastors. This is a monthly space for pastors to cultivate their relationship with Jesus and develop a culture of discipleship in the local church. This is a safe space for pastors to learn, grow, and work out their own sense of pastoral identity and calling with a community of pastors. This is a space of discernment where we regularly meet to prayerfully work out what it means to develop a discipleship culture.  Please consider joining this cohort for your own soul and to develop a discipleship culture. 

The Discipleship Culture Series is for anyone who is working toward developing a culture of discipleship in the local church – pastors, small group leaders, small group coaches. Participating together as a team of leaders from your church provides an exponential opportunity for growth in the discipleship culture at your church.

Discipleship Culture Cohort is a monthly cohort experience for pastors. It is for pastor’s personal spirituality and your leadership as a pastor. Our vision is to cultivate a culture of discipleship in the local church. 

For You

Leadership can be lonely. Pastors need friends who can talk about their intimacy with Jesus. They also need a safe space to work out their own approach to ministry. These online conversations are for you as pastors who desire friendship, mutual support, and growth.   

Your Leadership

In order to lead, we need to be led. We are seeking to grow God’s people but we need safe spaces to work out our own practical theology. We may find ourselves discipling a few individuals at our churches. While this is good, it is not enough. Discipleship must work its way through the whole church, and it must start with us.  This is not easy. We need to dismantle and challenge some our old ways to ministry in order to plant new ways.  

Peter Scazzero said that defining culture is difficult, “because culture consists primarily of unspoken rules about the way that we do things around here.”  We are going to put into words the different realities of our churches and seek to discern how we can grow in our call to make disciples of all nations. 

Conversations from the Soul of Pastors to Ministry of Pastors

  • Soul of Pastors – This space will be primarily focused on our relationship with God and our personal well-being out of which healthy ministry arises. 
  • Ministry of Pastors – This portion will be a mixture of personal reflection, conversation, and teaching, aimed at integrating discipleship into our ministry and developing discipleship in small groups. The focus goes beyond simply discipling individuals to cultivating a discipleship culture.  


Each Discipleship conversation is a two-hour monthly commitment.  

  • 10:00 – 11:00 am – Soul of Pastors – Focus on our relationship with God 
  • 11:00 – 12:00 pm – Ministry of Pastors – Focus on our ministry for and with God.  
Sept 21 Introduction – The Problem with Discipleship Today
Oct 19 Congregational Formation
Nov 16 Community pt. 1 – relational, personal, communal faith
Dec 7 Community pt. 2 – multi-cultural community
Jan 18 Community pt. 3 – Not an One Size Fits All approach
Feb 15 Responsibility – Anti-Consumer Behaviour
Mar 21 Multiplication – of Leaders and Groups
Apr 18 Spiritual Formation in Community
May 16 Group Dynamics and Facilitating Groups
Jun 20 Discipleship Culture Cohort – A Year In Review

The Building Discipleship Culture Small Group series provides training for lay persons and pastors to start a discipleship oriented small group ministry in the local church.  This group meets monthly on Wednesday evenings starting October 19, 8:00 pm-9:30 pm. Sign up here and join us for an information session on September 14 at 8:00 pm.

Who Should Attend

  • Anyone who wants to start a small group ministry in their church.  
  • Churches who may have small groups or bible studies but want to move toward an intentional discipleship focus.  
  • Churches that have a discipleship focus, and even a good groups system, but feel stuck  
  • Young Adult ministries, Family Ministries, Adult Ministries desiring a focus on discipleship   
  • Pastors, lay leaders, current and potential small group leaders 
If your church or ministry is starting from zero, this is a launch point.
If you currently have a small group ministry, this will help you take a next step toward growth and multiplication of leaders and groups.
If you desire to get to the heart of discipleship, and move the needle forward, you are welcome!  


September is an info session with no obligation to continue throughout the year. 

Monthly equipping / coaching sessions beginning in October 2022 and ending in June 2023. It is required for at least two to attend from your church – you and a ministry partner. 

What to Expect

Expect to grow in discipleship. Expect deep reflection, conversation, and embodied practices around cultivating a culture of discipleship.  Don’t expect easy answers or things to copy in your own context.  The series will be theological and practical in nature. 

Cost: $25 for CBOQ pastors/leaders  |  $75 for non-CBOQ pastors/leaders 

How to Participate

  1. Register here
  2. Check out the Info session (No commitment is necessary for the info session) 
  3. Invite at least 1-2 other leaders to participate 
  4. Commit to participating in all sessions 


8:00 pm – 9:30 pm

Sep 14  Information Session
Oct 19  Matthew 28:18-20
Nov 16  Group Dynamics/Facilitation
Dec 7  Sending and Prayer – Matthew 10:1
Jan 11  Ask the Lord of the Harvest – Matthew 9:35-38
Feb 8  Introduction to Discipleship – Mark 3:13-15
Mar 8  Christian Community and Practices/Habits – Acts 2:42-47
Apr 20  Empowering Leaders – Acts 6:1-8
May 18  Faithful Presence – Acts 28:30-31

L-R: Ryan Marthinsen, Dennis Funk, Karen Heppner, Paul Lam, Sheldon Dyck

Sheldon Dyck is the Pastor of Discipleship and Small Groups at Mississauga City Baptist Church.

Dennis Funk serves as the Director of Ministry Resources and Small Groups Network for The Navigators of Canada.

Karen Heppner is the Pastor of Life Groups and Leadership Development at The Bridge, Markham.

Paul Lam is the CBOQ Church Life and Leadership Associate previously served as Pastor of Discipleship and Small Groups in a local church setting.

Ryan Marthinsen is the Pastor of Family Ministries at Queensway Baptist Church, Brantford.