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Hey folks,

Here in Ontario Canada we now have a ban on gatherings of more than 50 people.

Instead of 6 services with start times staggered across 3 sanctuaries,  our services are now online only.  So the worship and teaching ministry teams now put on one service to an empty sanctuary and then the service is broadcast online twice.  While playing (I'm a bass player), instead of focusing on leading the congregation, we try to focus on the cameras, i.e. the online congregation.  They were always there of course, we've just never focused on them.  I think it's especially difficult for our teaching pastors when they deliver the Word because there's no one to laugh at their jokes :-)

All weekly gatherings at the church have been suspended.  I haven't heard an announcement yet in regard to life groups which usually meet in people's homes.

The teaching pastors are now putting out a daily 5 minute devotional video.  That's a good idea and they've been really good so far.

I expect that this will be extended until the summer when hopefully transmission of the virus is curbed.




At my old church (CRC) there was a "host elder" who would stand at the pulpit and make a show of looking at his watch and giving the stink-eye to anyone who wasn't in their seat on time.  Sometimes he would make comments from the pulpit.  Ha!

My new church (a community church), accommodates folks with multiple service times.  They run 5 (five) morning services.  Early risers (14%, ~350 people) attend the 8:25am service.  The 9:45am service is the most popular with 42% attendance.  The sleepyheads (27%) go to the last service at 11:15am.  (Total is 2,000 - 2,400).  More ...

Another thing they do is design the services so that people coming or going aren't really noticed.  The house lights are off for the first 25 minutes.  Between the volume of the worship music, stage lighting, smoke machines (and occasionally pyrotechnics) no one notices.  The house lights are only on for 30 minutes (for the sermon).

My new church is growing fast and for me, it's a breath of fresh air.  No, I'm not a kid.  I'm 58 years young.

Hey Josh ... We've enjoyed sermons illustrating biblical messages using the Matrix movies.  That meant a lot to us geeks in the congregation.  I think it's also especially meaningful to our high school youth.



Hi Rebecca,

We have had a gift-based ministry in our church for more than 10 years -- and it has been fantastic for us.  We put on a Discover-Your-Spiritual-Gifts program on a regular basis and stored the results in a database.  We have also categorized all the serving positions in our church for the spiritual gifts required.  It just makes so much sense!  Putting people with the wrong gifts into a position never works out.  But putting the right gifts to work has great rewards -- the people serving are energized by their service so much that we've even been able to extend the length of service terms.

As for the transition, we brought in a consultant from Christian Reformed Home Missions to take us through the process.  Between the seminars, training and many sermons on spiritual gifts, this approach worked well for us.

Yes, it's a bunch of work -- change is always difficult -- but now our ministry feels very natural.  We couldn't imagine going back.

Encouragement and blessings to your and your congregation!


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