Local churches are now recovering from the pandemic as people slowly return to the shrine rather than watching from home. Although the services were in an empty sanctuary, the funds remained stable and helped the local poor.
CrossBridge Church, with a campus in Pinecrest, Brickell, Key Biscayne, Miami Springs, and Homestead, hasn’t had a surprising fit in online worship. “Our church was already positioned to go online. We were already streaming live. So the thing for us is how can we serve the city? said Carter Brown, senior pastor of CrossBridge Church. The tithe remained stable during the pandemic and the church turned to donate the money to the community.
“The pandemic actually accelerated a vision we had for funds,” Reverend Brown said. “We have set the vision to be a 50/50 church in five years. So 50% of everything donated to the church goes back to the city.
CrossBridge has seen positive results from all online cults during the pandemic, as it made members want to serve the city, Reverend Brown said. “Locally, we ran a food distribution service that fed up to 17,000 families during Covid. “
While some churches have dealt with the chaos of online worship negatively and now fear that the number of congregations is declining, CrossBridge views it positively.
“People understand that they can love it online. They were forced to do this about six months ago, and while they enjoy worship in person, they also understand the validity of online worship, ”Reverend Brown said. Church is going to be hybrid in the future, according to CrossBridge.
“One really exciting thing is that for most churches, Easter 2020 has been the busiest service they’ve ever had. More than in 2019. The ease was there, ”said Reverend Brown.
“The 2020 Easter service was actually the busiest we’ve seen,” said Al Bunis, senior pastor at Plymouth Congregational Church in Coconut Grove. Plymouth had to learn to use the technology quickly when the pandemic began.
“Our campus is beautiful and appreciated by the congregation, so we filmed the service in different parts of the campus and posted it. Only the sermon came from the pulpit, ”said Reverend Bunis.
Plymouth began to gradually open up to physical worship again at the end of September with pre-roster enrollment, masks and distancing.
“We have stopped asking people to register to physically come to church and are still in spaced seats. But we got about a third of the congregation back. People like to stay home to watch in their pajamas, ”Reverend Bunis said.
“We are not 100% back to normal, but we are seriously starting again,” he said. The congregation is usually 250, but right now about 100 are watching online.
Plymouth is a popular wedding venue, so when weddings were called off and postponed money was lost, according to Reverend Bunins.
Benevolence has also remained strong in Plymouth, despite the video cult. “Our outreach and mission board has been very strong during the pandemic,” Reverend Bunis said. “Our donation with the Miami Homeless Rescue Mission has been really strong.”
While churches react differently to online services, some accept that hybrid worship is the future of the church and more traditional ones want people in the pews, donations have remained stable during covid, according to Reverend Brown and Reverend Bunis.
The pandemic has helped congregations donate money and services to the local community, which is causing harm.