As universities and workplaces switch to operating remotely for the foreseeable future, many churches are wondering whether they should follow suit. It’s highly advisable for churches to minimize exposure to COVID-19 as much as possible among its congregants, but to do that effectively, technology is required. What’s going on in the nation right now is another real-life reminder of merely one of the many ways technology can help churches.
In addition to its current application of helping to stop the spread of the virus, technology can help churches of every size and stature remain in biblical community, even when physical gatherings are not possible. In this current paradigm, here are three distinct ways technology helps churches virtually be the Church:
1. Online Worship.
While there’s nothing that can or should replace in-person church attendance, sometimes, we aren’t left with many other options, as proven through COVID-19. Even when viruses aren’t spreading, there are still times on a normal day when circumstances don’t allow people to be at church on Sunday. A church that offers live worship and sermon streaming or audio podcasts of weekly services provides individuals the opportunity to still be encouraged by the Word, even if they are isolated.
2.Virtual Community Connection.
Whether it be through a website, app or social media platform, technology can keep members connected outside of your church building through prayer, small-group discussion and even fellowship. Congregations that encourage online community can more readily be there for one another, no matter where their members are or what time zones separate them. Through the accessibility of virtual connection when needed, the Church can still be the hands and feet of Jesus, meeting emotional and spiritual needs.
3.Web-based Bible Study.
As officials continue to advise against limiting outings and gatherings, many people will spend more time at home. As such, they will have more time on their hands than normal. Rather than turning to mindless entertainment, congregants can be spiritually strengthened through churches that provide edifying resources online, allowing individuals to daily dig into God’s Word and promises. Through online Bible studies, biblical streaming content and Christian books, churches can equip their members with tools to use their time wisely. For believers, this benefit is indispensable.
Although COVID-19 has sent a wave of fear through our nation, churches have the opportunity to set a biblical example. There is no better time for churches to be a deliverer of God’s Word no matter the outside circumstances, instilling God’s perfect peace and comfort into a panicked world.