This past year our NT-NL Synod, ELCA pastors, musicians, worship leaders, educators, lay staff and volunteers have had to shift dramatically, go online for worship, and learn new skills. I have been impressed over and over by the passion, energy, and willingness to adapt they have shown. Large congregations and small have figured out new ways of doing ministry together, ways that will continue into the future post-pandemic.
As I have visited congregations I have often seen the digital ministry operations and been been given a short run through of what they do. Across our synod we have systems ranging from high level complex broadcast booths, folks gathering via zoom, high quality recorded worship, to a teenager with an iphone broadcasting the service. But I had never had the chance to spend a few hours behind the scenes to really learn what this takes.
On Wednesday March 24th I got that chance at my spouse’s congregation (Trinity, FW) for their weekly Faith 5 broadcast and then Lenten Worship. Amazing to see the preparation required. Setting up and blocking camera pre-sets for each service, preparing graphics, learning to toggle between cameras, broadcasting to Facebook and YouTube, and subtly managing the sound mix. In 3 hours I got quite an education in how this congregation has added digital ministry fully into their life together.
Unlike many of our congregations prior to pandemic Trinity didn’t do livestreaming or any video recording, so they are a good case study of a congregation responding and learning quickly. I am sure Pastor Kendra Mohn or Pastor Will Foster would be happy to speak with you about their learnings as I have no doubt any of your other colleagues. So many different ways to do digital ministry, a reality that is now a part of our life for the future, and a great way to activate new volunteers. #NTNL #InMissionTogether