14 months ago, we had a go at livestreaming a service in St Mark’s Church, Pennington. The following week we were in lockdown, and soon after, we invited St Thomas to work with us too. In that time more than 42,000 people have joined our services.
In recent weeks our buildings at St Mark’s and St Thomas are open for services, and some of our services from the buildings are being streamed.
We recognise that over the last year, we have had a huge mix of people joining us online, some of whom really want to be in our buildings, and for whom our online services have been a poor second best. Many of those people are now really glad to be able to worship in a building again, or to join in worship of services that are being streamed from the building. We are glad that our online services have helped them to feel connected through this unusual season, and are glad that they are now able to worship again in a way that better helps them to encounter God.
However, through this year we have also been so excited to start realising the potential of online church, and are delighted that there are also many of you that are now part of this church, for whom worshipping with others online in this service is a deeply enriching part of your faith, for whom this form of worship is opening up a deeper intimacy and connection with God, with ourselves, with each other. Some of you already had connections with Pennington and Lymington, and many of you have encountered us through other routes, and may not live anywhere near here!
We want to continue our online church, as a fresh expression of church. We’d really like your help with this. In particular, we’d like to draw together a team who are passionate about our online church, and who want to continue worshipping together online. You may live locally here, you may live further afield, you may have already been part of things here, you may be completely new. If you’d like to be part of this team, if you’re energised and excited about this work, do get in touch. We’re looking for people that would like to:
- think about the vision for this fresh expression of church,
- share ideas together about how we can deepen this online community
- help to plan what we will do, to share leadership of this online church
- people that would be interested in leading, sharing their stories, recording readings etc
If you’d like to be involved in this in any way, please do email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know how you’d like to be involved. We’ll be sharing this information in our churches and services over the next few weeks, and hope to then draw the team together in June, to start leading this fresh expression in the summer.
Please do pray for this ministry, as we seek to discern how the Spirit is moving, and to find ways to continue to worship together in this way.