Four Benefits of Being Online
And just like that, we are all online. From live streaming our services to interacting in a Zoom room, the church is communicating online like never before. Phil Cooke, a Christian TV producer, observed that “Right now, the Church is producing more media than Hollywood.” Think about that! Who would ever have imagined!
However, pivoting to Facebook from face-to-face meetings hasn’t been easy. It’s challenging to preach through a camera and creatively bring a congregation together while remaining apart. The good news, churches are doing a great job. We can use this COVID-19 crisis for God’s glory.
Here are four benefits of being “forced” online.
- Increased Audience. While some might not listen to the entire service, most churches have seen an increase of viewers online over their regular weekend attendance. First-time guests are frequent. People are inviting others to join their online services and meetings. One of our churches, which averages around 80 on Sunday, now has 1,700 viewers.
- More interaction. It seems like people are willing to share more freely and deeply online. Online prayer meetings and small group participation have grown. A Facebook Live stream on the Church’s page allows members to comment, ask questions, and play a more active role than sitting in church. We can easily utilize these tools to create ways for viewers to engage.
- Extra Flexibility. This past Easter Sunday, I watched three different Services and, on Monday, peeked in on a few more. The point is that I didn’t have to be in a specific place or a specific time. What is online can be accessed anytime, from anywhere. Members of the church who are traveling or who move away can tune into broadcasts and experience being part of the church community. This is valuable for military members who are away from home for long periods, healthcare workers who are on-shift on Sunday morning, or moms and dads who are staying home with a sick little one.
- Greater opportunity. Some have resented that the church hasn’t been able to meet in their building. After all, aren’t we a necessary service!?! I agree, but we can freely meet and share the gospel like we never have before. People from around the world have access to what we are putting online.
BEFORE YOU GO
Well, maybe being online isn’t “just like that” but we are learning along the way. What are the other benefits you have found to being online? How have you managed the learning curve? I’d love to hear from you!