Churches innovate to provide Easter services amidst pandemic

OAK HILL, WV (WOAY) – Normal Easter tradition for a Christian family is to attend Sunday Service at their local church.

But with everything going on and large gatherings being both frowned upon and dangerous, pastors had to get creative this year for Easter service. One such way is to hold drive-in services, where church patrons stay in their cars and pastors preach in parking lots.

Charlie Schmuck, pastor of the Oak Hill Gospel Tabernacle, says the idea is a great way to keep their community engaged while social distancing. 

“We wanted to have an opportunity to go out and share the word. Be around each other and keep our social distancing and our windows up and everything,” Schmuck said.

Another way churches have been holding services is through live stream. Many pastors will preach in an empty church and live stream it through Facebook or YouTube. Schmuck said that many churches won’t have issues doing this, as many have been doing it for months.

“We do Facebook every Sunday. We’ve actually been doing it since before the whole coronavirus thing. We started that back in I think October.” 

These innovative ways of holding services are also a great way to get new members for churches. Having service online or in a drive-in setting makes it more accessible to those who may not get out as much. 

“I was just hoping to see some new faces and I did. Got to see some folks that I’ve never seen in our church. I thought it went really well and we had a lot of people out here this morning.”

And even if you are a member of a different faith, or just want to celebrate Easter in your own way, there’s still plenty of opportunities for you to engage with your community during the pandemic.

Online engagement is easier than ever. Some Jewish families have been having Passover events through Skype calls, and Muslims will likely hold many Ramadan celebrations remotely as well later this month. 


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