Although the COVID pandemic has turned a corner in recent months, church leaders should remain mindful of the virus. Many people in the country are still not vaccinated, and this places your congregation at risk. Here are three mistakes to avoid in your church until the COVID pandemic is under control,
Turning Off Digital
COVID required churches to go into the digital age to maintain communication with congregations and provide uplifting sermons. As COVID vaccinations are being given to more people in communities, some churches turn off the digital channel. Unfortunately, they could also lose a good proportion of their congregations. Many people have found that the digital access that seemed inconvenient has brought a high degree of safety, comfort, and security. Those same people may decide not to return to in-person services.
Returning to Business as Usual
Throughout the past year, churches allocated vital staff and volunteer resources to community outreach and other non-traditional roles to take care of their congregations. Now that the COVID pandemic has taken on a different character, thanks to the vaccinations, many churches are realigning those same resources to more traditional roles. While your congregation may be protected from the physical effects of COVID, it will take years for the emotional consequences to subside. Don’t be too hasty in bringing those staff and volunteer resources back in-house. Your congregation still needs some extra attention right now. Continue with outreach efforts and maintain an online presence.
Removing Precautions for In-Person Services
Churches are rejoicing at the chance to gather together in celebration after a long year of isolation, but don’t let the enthusiasm overshadow your focus on keeping everyone safe. Even if most of your congregation has been vaccinated, there are still those who have not been, including children. Continue to take precautions for your in-person services, such as social distancing and wearing masks. You may also want to consider keeping children’s services remote. Also, consider planning some outdoor gatherings where the chances of transmitting COVID are much lower. You can serve light breakfast items, have a revival, and even have your adult and children’s classes outside.
COVID has become a political hotbed for many people, and the church plays an important role in advocating for kindness in these difficult times. Consider how you can use your sermons to encourage acceptance and kindness among your congregation.