We are a group of men who gather together to encourage each other in friendship and faith and to support each other to be better husbands, fathers — and better men — in the marketplace and in our communities. Friendship at NCS happens through our regular meetings in local Chapters across the country.
A few times a month, we gather in restaurants or other common ground to be together with other guys and hear a speaker — one of our own or a guest — share a personal story that enlightens, encourages or challenges us.
NCS chapters are guided by a few simple principles:
- All men are welcome, but NCS is a gathering for men only.
- NCS is a “safe place” and in this, we take a cue from A.A. – “what is said here stays here.”
- We meet on neutral ground (attractive, convenient locations like restaurants, country clubs, offices and homes… and we avoid meeting in church buildings.)
- Membership is free to all. There are no dues or fees to be an NCS “member”.
- Any organization that we have is very “flat.” We have no paid chapter leaders. (We view NCS as a movement, not as a formal organization.) This also keeps anyone from dominating and controlling a chapter and its direction. Our model is volunteer leadership teams instead of paid leaders.
- Our leadership comes from the marketplace.(Some church leaders & pastors attend, but they are not the leaders of any NCS chapter.)
- All of our chapters are always open to anyone at anytime, and easily found. And we have no closed groups or “secret handshakes”.
Perhaps it’s easier to grasp what NCS is not:
- We are not a men’s program from a church or any denomination
- We are not a Bible Study… although NCSers do read the Bible regularly.
- We are not a prayer meeting… although we encourage men to pray.
- We are not a counseling service… although there is no doubt we have many stories of guys’ lives being changed together.
- We are not a rehab program or a support group– 12 Step or otherwise… although we have taken some principles from A.A. like the need to be brutally honest about your own junk.
- We are not a drinking club… although we have plenty of wine, scotch and cognac snobs among us, we also in fact have some recovering alcoholics among us. We are always sensitive to them.
- We are not a cigar club… but there’s never any shortage of quality cigars and the accompanying conversations. A great cigar is a great way to start a friendship.
Most men lead lives of quiet desperation…
Men, especially those working in the marketplace, are isolated and alone, distracted and often overwhelmed. They are looking for more from their limited and superficial friendships. The pressures and temptations for men are great. NCS gives guys a place to form deep friendships and experience real growth in Jesus.
We encourage each chapter to form Energy Groups. These groups meet regularly (average twice monthly) and may vary in size from chapter to chapter but are usually 4-6 men, with the purpose of NCS members going deeper into the challenges and opportunities that a member might be facing in his life. It’s a great opportunity for men to help each other in a private, non-oppositional and non-imposing manner. NCS members find that these small groups are both Empowering and Energizing. Thus the name, Energy Groups!
If guys spent more time in friendship with each other and could discuss their temptations, they would need to spend less time asking for forgiveness.
We believe in creating an environment where all men are welcome, no matter what they do for a living, or what mistakes they have made in their lives. Grace is essential to our community.
All of our speakers are followers of Jesus, and we regularly refer to scripture, but many attendees do not have any specific faith view. Men are attracted to transformational stories, and speakers who inspire and encourage us. Often men will find their own lives are changed by their encounters with Jesus, and the encouragement of their NCS brothers.
Come check it out. You will find a community of men who are committed to each other, who laugh together (we don’t take ourselves too seriously) and who walk with each other through life’s challenges.
About the New Canaan Society
With up to 25,000 men in the NCS movement, meetings are held weekly in our 60+ local chapters nationwide. Once a year the movement has an opportunity to be together at the National Retreat Weekend in March. Regional events and retreats are also held throughout the year.
NCS is often described as a combination of Young Life for marketplace men, with principles from a 12-step program… being open, honest, vulnerable in a safe place.