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Worship: Covid Considerations

resources from judicatories, including re-opening guidelines and online worship videos; online hospitality & participation; engaging children, youth, and intergenerational; lectionary & preaching; liturgy, music & liturgical arts; tech & copyright helps;

Welcome

Welcome to The Ministry Lab's curated Covid Considerations list.

Here you'll find books, blogs, podcasts, articles, and Judicatory Resources to assist congregational decisions around worship, faith formation, and other gatherings as Covid continuously changes how we create community.

You may also find tips from our Technology/Copyright and Online Hospitality lib guides helpful in this area.

Books

     Coronaspection     Pandemic Prayers

Blogs, Podcasts & Articles

Person wearing a mask during a worship service and graphs of post-covid church statisticsHow Has COVID-19 Impacted Religious Participation?

by Amy Kubichek of Lewis Center for Church Leadership

May 3, 2022

Online & Hybrid Ministry Resources: blogs, podcasts, articles, etc.

Church graphic on a maskThere’s No Going Back to the Pre-Pandemic Church

Kay Kotan says many churches feel a natural desire to return to the familiar, comfortable patterns of the past. But churches that embrace this time of disruption as a catalyst for lasting change are most likely to be vital in the post-pandemic world.

Split screen with a congregation praying in church on the left and a person praying at home beside a computer and bibleImagining a Hybrid Future” featuring Rosario Picardo

How can a church develop hybrid ministry that connects both with those in the room and those who will never enter your church building? Rosario Picardo, one of the authors of a new book on ministry in the digital age, discusses how churches can continue to develop online ministry while resuming in-person ministries in the post-pandemic age.

suggests What to Bring out of Quarantine with helpful leading questions

Letters from Outside the Camp from Fr. Richard Rohr of the Center for Action and Contemplation offer insights and wisdom for moving through this apocalyptic time.

Judicatory & Other Denominational Guidelines

Bishop Bill Tesch of the ELCA's NW MN Synod offers guidance and Martin Luther's comments on faith during The Plague in this video.

Interfaith leaders offer pandemic prayer

The leaders of more than a dozen judicatories in Minnesota, including Dakotas-Minnesota Area Bishop Bruce R. Ough, crafted a joint statement voicing concern about the increase in COVID-19 cases and urging Minnesotans to serve their communities, partner with neighbors and health care workers, and make changes that will save lives.

offers their Covid-19 Response which includes Phased Regathering Plans for Churches and Re-Opening Considerations. Bishop Ough's Conference Regathering Plan Moves to Orange may be helpful in decision-making.

offers links to worship resources, preaching/sermon videos, Sample Policies for reopening, and guidance for Congregational Life.

Covid-19 Advisories

Care-filled Worship and Sacramental Life in a Lingering Pandemic is a comprehensive update from the consultation on Ecumenical Protocols for Worship, Fellowship, and Sacramental Practices. Incorporating the latest CDC guidance, this update informs decision-making and basic practices of Christian worship and congregational life. Additional resources related to the pandemic available on the ALCM website.

COVID-19 Funeral Assistance from FEMA: FEMA will provide financial assistance for COVID-19-related funeral expenses incurred after Jan. 20, 2020. Applications will be accepted starting April 12. Please share this resource with loved ones of those who passed away of COVID and had a funeral at your church.

Emerging from Covid

People praying in the living room of a house church worship serviceChurch Comes Home” featuring Dave Barnhart

The pandemic taught us that church happens in powerful and meaningful ways outside our buildings. Dave Barnhart describes how small, home-centered worshiping communities can connect with people who may never cross the threshold of your church.

An black and white photo illustration of rows of lit candles with the words "Songs of Remembrance" across the bottom.

Luke Medina/NPR/March 4, 2022

What songs meant the most to your loved ones and friends lost to COVID-19?

NPR curated a list.

What Now?  Tools for Engaging the Post-Covid Church
MennoMedia shares a suite of free, practical resources created for pastors as they navigate the impacts and realities of COVID19. 

For three months, six new resources will be available to nurture community and support the mission and ministry of congregations across North America in this unique time.

Church interior with wooden pews and red carpet.

Building Faith from Virginia Theological Seminary offers this Liturgy for Regathering in the Sanctuary - for returning post-Covid and for other times when sanctuary worship has been forestalled.

Convergence offers the on-demand course How to Do Hybrid Worship with Jim Keat:

A 3-week cohort exploring tips, tricks, and best practices for what it means to be a hybrid church.

Live sessions: May 12, 19, 26 from 10:00 AM - 11:30 PM ET

All sessions will be recorded and available to watch on demand.

pexels-ramy-kabalan-745054.jpg

Nuns & Nones provide an excellent article on emerging from Covid-19 and an interactive resource guide for creating ritual to help us move - individually and collectively - into the future "with little luggage, ready to imagine another world."

Coming Back Together: Church and Consent Culture in 2021 by Meta Herrick Carlson, Jan. 6, 2021 and Diana Butler Bass's Religion after Pandemic.

Lewis Center for Church Leadership has a growing list of Covid-19-related resources on topics of Social Action, Stewardship, Technology, and Hospitality.

DON'T sign over SLIDE TO POWER OFF ONLINE SERVICES cell phone image7 Reasons You Must Not Abandon Your Online Services

Thom Rainer says it is a mistake for churches to give up their digital or streaming services after returning to in-person worship. He outlines seven reasons online worship can augment your place-based worship and reach the community.