Pandemic Religion: A Digital Archive

Collected Item: “Worshipping Together From Home”

Title

Worshipping Together From Home

Narrative or description

• I was raised in Houston in the Methodist church and became actively involved at a young age. I began leading worship during services on Sundays with the worship team at the beginning of high school and continue to lead today when I’m home from college. As I’m now in college in Austin rather than Houston, I found a new church home but did not engage in leading with the worship team there. I missed being able to lead others in worship through music and feel the power that worship can bring to a congregation. I was displaced by the COVID-19 pandemic and had to come back to Houston - I was asked to rejoin the worship team and help them with the move to online worship. This move to online services greatly affected the dynamic of the whole church, as we value fellowship and communal worship. Our services are now all pre-recorded, instead of live, and we are unable to meet together to engage in our faith as a physical group. Our faith puts a strong emphasis on the importance of community, and by being stuck in our homes with no ability to worship with others, our faith can be tested at times and it can be difficult to find the motivation to engage in worship. A lot of work goes into making sure that people still feel connected throughout this time, but the move to online worship through music has been most affected. The first few online services after our church closed its doors due to the virus consisted of our worship pastor and I putting out content for people to be able to worship to. After a few Sundays of this, the he decided that we needed a better way to engage the congregation and provide a more community based sense of worship, other than just two people singing when we normally have a whole band. Since we engage in a more contemporary way of worship rather than traditional, we figured it wouldn’t be too daunting of a task to have a few people record their own parts, send them in, and then piece them all together. This move to a more traditional kind of worship that we engage in normally helped to rebuild those emphases of community and worship through fellowship that we, as a church, hold so dear. Even though we aren’t able to worship together physically, seeing these videos every week and hearing my family sing along reminds me that even though we can’t be together, we can worship together from home.

Date

2020-05-11

Denomination or tradition

Methodist

State or territory

Texas

Name

[private]

Do you agree?

Yes
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