Ministry Notes

June 2020

There was a meme that was floating around on Facebook a while back, it pictured Tom Hanks as Forrest Gump, sitting on a park bench. The caption said, “And just like that, all the Lutheran Pastors became televangelists.” It made me giggle…


I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting on what “church” means these days. Cross of Christ and Cannon River churches are literally planted in our communities; we are rooted in this soil and we always will be. We are a physical presence and when we are gathered as the body of Christ, we are the Communion of Saints. A community in union… So, gathering is important and it always will be, as far as I’m concerned. And I miss it tremendously…


And I’ve also started to notice that going to church is one thing, and being the church is another. Although we are congregations rooted in this soil, we are also people rooted in God. In this sense, the Body of Christ is all of us, living our faith in our everyday lives.


We trust that God creates new things in the midst of, perhaps even especially in, chaos. Perhaps this pandemic has opened our eyes a little bit about how we think about and experience church…


A former colleague and pastor recently said, “Being church in this day and age, is like being a little storefront wondering where all the customers are, when everyone is shopping on-line.” I’m afraid there might be some truth to that. While the worship videos are a far cry from being together in person, there have been some interesting things going on…


I recently looked at some “analytics” specific to our YouTube worship videos. Several of our worship videos have been viewed more than 200 times! I mentioned that number recently to one person who said, “And my family of 5 watch it all together, so the real number has to be more than that!” But while the number of people watching is high, the average length of time it is watched is about half.


I’ve heard comments from others about how they love that they can watch the worship video on their own schedule. One person said they work on Sunday mornings, and this way they can watch it and feel connected to the community. One person said they like it because it’s short!


And some of our neighbors’ who aren’t members, have also been watching. My mom loves it!


I don’t know what all these things mean, and I think it’s too early to make any conclusions. But as churches in this time and place in the midst of this pandemic, we’ve been dwelling in God’s Word, and loving our neighbors. And people have noticed…


Many pastors I’ve talked with are convinced that going forward, even when things get back to normal, we will all continue with some forms of worship or church videos. This might be part of a new normal… “And just like that, all the Lutheran Pastors became televangelists.”


While in-person worship can never be replaced, our experience has been that we’ve reached a lot people with our worship videos. We’ll have to do some thinking about all this… Definitely something to pray about!


Stay well, my friends,   


Todd

Church Phone: 651-388-3464

Pastors Email: [email protected]