Creating An Online Worshipping Community


I have read Jason Moore's book, "Both/And" for short. "Maximizing Hybrid Worship Experiences for In-Person and On-line Engagement" for the full title. 

As I am reading along I like to bullet point items that strike a chord and hopefully, it gives you an idea of things I am thinking about. Here are the things I think are worth noting.

  • Churches need a digital strategy beyond web/Facebook/YouTube. The need to create an online environment that is friendly and has designated people online to greet, ask questions, and connect people's thoughts. Someone that engages those that have joined online.
  • Churches are seeing more first-time visitors due to a comprehensive and interactive online experience.
  • Churches are also seeing others that will create their worship community online and never enter your building.
  • Not everything is done in in-person worship translates well online. Music is the main thing that doesn't. 
  • The longer the service, the harder it is to focus. Start shortening your service.
  • Lyrics and Leaders need to be on screen at the same time.
  • Limit announcements in church. Make action steps if you have to have a couple of announcements. 
  • Online worship is not a pretend version of worship. It needs to be a true experience of worship for those participating. It's about connection, not content. 
  • Change up your order of worship. Maybe a different order per series. 
  • There is no going back to how worship was pre-Covid. Covid happened. We can't pretend we didn't live through it.
  • It would help if you didn't let anyone join any team or committee without agreeing to two rules
    Come to the Meeting
    Support the decisions of the team even when you disagree
  • Create the desired outcome or "Call to Action" for each sermon series.
  • 25-40 minutes is the sweet spot for online worship. How can you pull this off in real-time?
  • The key is relationship building - need a chat host
  • Move from Monologue to Dialogue Worship. 
  • Create some alternative moments for online worshippers.
Posted by Keith Vessell

Keith is an active clergy member of the United Methodist Church and a licensed social worker. He is also certified in Project Management by the State of Missouri. These tools come together such that Keith can provide a unique experience for leading a congregation.

Keith is a natural leader who knows the right questions and the right time to listen. Keith has a passion for the marginalized in our society. Loving without boundaries and to those that make us uncomfortable is something you will continually here from him. Keith holds God's grace at the top of his theology. It overcomes all things. His pronouns are He/His. 

Keith and his wife Molly, also a United Methodist Pastor, live in Marshall where they are serving in ministry, corralling their pets and making their children’s eyes roll. When not working, Keith enjoys keeping up with the latest music releases and rooting for Cardinal Baseball. Sorry KC fans. 

Most of all, Keith wants to build relationships. He wants to get to know people beyond the "hello in the hallway."


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