Our friend Laura Treneer from CPO and now roving reporter on the Online Church sent this (now edited) update through to Pete Phillips, Premier's Head of Digital Theology:
Hope you’re doing ok….
Pete says: Yes thanks. Hope you are too!
A couple of livestream experiments yesterday if useful as examples at any stage :
- the new musical director at All Souls Langham Place rather impressively managed to pull off a full orchestra and choir with everyone recording and filming their part in their own home. <...> Apparently he’s the guy on the carpet with a xylophone. Whole service was pre-recorded.
Pete says: Here's In Christ Alone performed by the orchestra and singers - WOW! The musical director (playing xylophone or is it a glockenspiel?) is Michael Andrews and this is pretty impressive feat! Well done, All Souls - setting the bar VERY high.
- our church live-streamed from the premises last week, but this week switched between three live feeds, one from a guy who lives in the church (adjacent cottage) on a piano, us at home (husband preached, kids helped with prayers and other stuff), and someone else doing the welcome etc from their home. At one point we had the kids in a corner of the screen doing actions while Jamie played piano from the church. This was interspersed with pre-recorded children’s talk, and lots of kids/adults had recorded stuff on their phone which was stitched together: https://vimeo.com/402105015
We had significantly more watch than normally attend, including lots of relatives of members and local friends who asked us if we were doing anything, and watched even though we know they wouldn’t attend in person. Hugely positive feedback on the message that was being shared, and the familiarity for those who know the church.
Pete says: this is now common across the churches - remember that being online opens up church service to safe viewing from the general public, and you never know who may be watching - some churches are seeing ten-fold increase in their congregations online. Welcome your new congregation!!!
I hear Emmanuel in Brighton are planning a prayer thing over Zoom for up to 1000 people this week. They had a slot on ITV news with St Peters about the increase in their congregations - https://www.itv.com/news/meridian/2020-03-24/church-doubles-attendance-with-online-services-due-to-pandemic/
Pete says: We're looking out for news on the prayer event.