As difficult as riding this virus storm has been, it’s an ill wind that doesn’t blow someone some good. During the darkest part – called ‘shelter in place’ in Florida (as when facing a direct hit from a hurricane) – when we had no contact with our churches, our priests, our church families, it was indeed dark and lonely and depressing and fearful. Kindly intended emails were nice, even the deeply concerned ones but we are a gregarious animal by nature and we tend not to do well with extended periods of lack of contact with other folks. Technology came to the rescue. We weren’t alone anymore.
Old news now, of course, but priests and ministers across the nation mastered enough technology to at least live stream on Face Book using their laptops or desk top computers. Wealthy congregations got cameras and sound to their priests. The really brave priests went to companies like Zoom – said a prayer, and took the leap. Zoom was like manna in the desert – it fed us with the faces and voices of our church families and our priests. It was fun, it was surprisingly intimate, and we were together again.
Churches are opening across America, thank God from Whom all blessing flow, but the smart priests are keeping their Zoom meeting rooms. As we are still not out of the woods regarding the virus (as the ‘news’ so happily tells us), smart priests are using Zoom for Bible study. We ‘Zoom’ at 9 a.m. on Sundays when we would normally gather for Bible study. I attended another Bible study with my sister in New Hampshire at 7 p.m last night.
The Zoom Bible study that got me excited, however, was a complete surprise. I also attend a Zoom Bible study, presented by one of our Bishops, in Dunwoody, Georgia at 11 a.m. Bishop Chad was called away for a family funeral in Maryland and he left us ‘students’ in the hands of a young man named Creighton. I was skeptical; you know us old folks. I should have known better.
Creighton was astounding! Friendly, knowledgeable, outgoing, not at all intimidated dealing with folks very much his senior. Quick to laugh, eager to explain. I asked a question and he paused to think about it and simply said he wasn’t comfortable answering my question – I think it may have been a little over his pay grade, so to speak – but he was fine with telling me that and I was truly impressed. Creighton will have his deacon ordination next month and I couldn’t be more delighted! The Church of the future is in good hands if Creighton is any indication.
So, yes, joy cometh in the morning, even if it is at 11 a.m.