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Reimagining Church: Post-Covid Church

Visioning a future church for the now; creating communities centered on Christ, cosmic good, and conscientious living.

Books

     Better: Waking Up to Who We Could Be     Coronaspection     The New Possible                         

Websites & Webinars

Convergence offers Strategic Planning for emerging from Covid and How to Use Your Church Campus As a Tool for Neighborhood Revitalization; both on demand.

Church Anew's 3-Session Series with Dr. Deanna Thompson, (The Virtual Body of Christ in a Suffering World) interviewing:

  • Episode 1: Rev. Ingrid Rasmussen - spiritual leadership in the wake of the tragic killings of George Floyd and Daunte Wright
  • Episode 2: Rev. Augustine Muthusami - how COVID-19 has challenged churches and shaped theology, worship, and pastoral practices
  • Episode 3: Dr. Diana Butler Bass - how the church might build community in the times ahead

And see Diana Butler Bass's Religion after Pandemic blog post.

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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."

Podcasts & Articles

The Kaleo Center offers this excellent resource on Sevenfold Social Transformation: excellent reading for vision, mission, and identity discernment; outreach and organizing discussions; and community engagement decisions.

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Diana Butler Bass offers an essential shift in perspective and profound ideas in Religion After Pandemic. Please read it!

Rev. Dr. Cameron Trimble frequently considers post-Covid transformations. Her Why Go to Church? is a must-read.

Graphic illustrating steps from mission statement to checklist to open church

Do You Need a Mission Statement for Your Post-Pandemic Transition Plan?

As congregations plan for a future with fewer pandemic-related restrictions, Lovett H. Weems Jr. says they need a standard for assessing various options. Without a clear connection to your primary mission your transition plan could easily be hijacked by those pushing hardest for their point of view or what neighboring churches are doing.

Church graphic on a mask

There’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 bible

Imagining 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.

What Will Your Church Look Like Post-COVID-19?

Barry Winders says the COVID-19 crisis is a hinge point for the church. This pivotal time demands mission-focused leaders lest the church slip back into the busyness and nonmissional activities of the pre-COVID-19 past.

Read more now.

Find more Lewis Center for Church Leadership Online Worship & Hybrid Church articles, blog posts, and podcasts here.

Denominational Resources

Resource 1

Thriving Beyond COVID is a Scripture-based study to encourage, inspire, and challenge congregations for the post-COVID journey ahead. This small- and large-group study is available for free download and includes a leader guide, a participant guide and videos.

MennoMedia's Ex. Dir. Amy Gingerich, reflects on discussions with pastors about the post-COVID church:

...None of us brought rose-colored glasses about future church life. We know that COVID has and will continue to bring enormous change to the church and society. You can’t just not worship in person for 12 months or more and then try to push your congregation back to the way things were. That is worshipping a false god.

People have changed. The church has changed.

...I heard... humbleness around the unknown...[and] generative ideas for building new kinds of congregational life. My encouragement for this week for church leaders is to reach out to other church leaders. Share ideas, collaborate on ministries (even worship), invite God to dream with you about the future.