by Nancy Arena, Deacon, Guest Blogger          –         Aug 20, 2020

How do BCCUCC members and friends maintain a sense of community and connectedness during a worldwide pandemic? What creative ideas do you have to build connections and are you called to be the champion for your idea?

In his recent blog Dale initiated a discussion on the importance of community and connection at BCCUCC. He recognized that, in spite of the many efforts to remain connected virtually, many of us miss seeing each other in person and interacting in a basic human way. Dale invited interested members of the congregation to join a Zoom meeting to brainstorm ideas on how to remain connected and enhance our sense of community during the pandemic.

On August 12th, 14 people met to explore and exchange our thoughts. The group generated a plethora of ideas (full list here) which were subsequently divided into three broad categories – Outdoor Activities, Online Enhancements to Worship, and Other.

Examples of outdoor activities include:

  • Kayaking or hiking
  • Small Group Coffee Hours (assigned – proposal developed)
  • In Person Small Group Taizé Prayer Services (assigned – proposal developed)
  • Outreach to the Community
    • McCoy Farm
  • Traveling Musicians Outside
  • Visual time memorial
    • Ribbons displayed outside the church honoring individuals who died from Covid-related illnesses
  • Outdoor single event-gathering (assigned – proposal in development)

(For any of these or similar activities, please see our BCCUCC Guidelines for Outdoor Gatherings.)

Examples of online enhancements to worship include:

  • Pre-recorded kids’ videos
  • Children’s message with kids
  • Live sharing on FB Live/Zoom
  • Show pictures of members in the virtual service

Examples of the other category include:

  • Creative Commemoration of Pandemic Experiences (assigned – proposal in development)
    • Prayer Tree
    • Quilt Squares
  • Communion Goody Bag (assigned – proposal in development)

As indicated above, some of the ideas have champions, who volunteered to define the who, what, when, where, and how needed to transform the ideas into actions. The online enhancements to worship were all assigned to the Worship Technology Team.

Now it is your turn. The August 12th participants want to gather more input from the congregation. Are you willing to take ownership of one of the unassigned ideas? Do you have other creative ideas not expressed on the list? What are your talents? Do you have an interest in reaching a specific demographic in our congregation, e.g. families with young children or elderly residents in congregant care? Do you feel a call to serve other members of the congregation or the broader community? How can you help? What would you lead? Building connections requires all of our collective talents and resources.

If you answered yes to any of the questions listed in the previous paragraph, please contact the church office to express your interest and commitment.

Thank you in advance for your response.