Imagining Church

Cornwall Presbyterian Church, the church I pastor, has now been worshipping virtually for eight weeks. During this time, we have experimented with Facebook Live, OBS Project, Zoom Worship, and with pre-recorded videos. We have turned to Zoom for online committee meetings, adult education offerings, confirmation classes, and virtual coffee hours. We have learned to make more phone calls and send more cards.

The time will come, when we will once again be able to worship in our sanctuary, likely with a new set of limitations and opportunities. We will find ways to put distance around us. We will make use of masks. Some programs and elements of church life may have to wait. We will return, marked by our time away from the building. Perhaps, in addition to managing new cleaning regimens, we will find that we bring new ideas with us, learned in our time away. Or perhaps, there will be space created for holy imaginings, that can now take shape. There are several excellent blogposts, which I will link at the bottom of this post, that offer good guidance for a return and ask thoughtful questions.

I am creating this blog as a place for us to imagine the possibilities of what comes next. What have we learned in this time of quarantine that we can carry into the next phase of our life together? Send me your thoughts and I will post them. What might communion look like in a post COVID-19 church? Send me your thoughts and I will post those too. I invite contributions from my own congregation. I will also solicit thoughts from colleagues and their imaginings of what comes next. I am seeking answers to the technical questions about how to structure church life. I am also seeking hopes and dreams for the opportunities this unique time may offer and perhaps we can have a conversation here.

Here links to posts that may be helpful:Small Churches and Re-Opening Our Doors24 Questions Your Church Should Answer Before People Return