FAYETTEVILLE, WV (WOAY) – As people are staying home and businesses have closed due to the pandemic, churches have been seeing a lot less use.
To counteract this, many churches in Southern West Virginia are now using live streams to conduct online services.
Jim Mitchell, a pastor at Grace Baptist Church, says that their church has been using live streams for a while, but this past week they have seen a huge increase in its use now that people are staying home.
“Well we’ve been doing a livestream for quite some time but what makes today different, as was last week, is there’s no one here.”
The church conducts Sunday service as well as Bible studies on Wednesdays. They say it’s a great way to have the community interaction a church provides, but without physical contact.
“We’ll do a Bible study live on Wednesday night, people come in, we’ll respond to questions or comments or anything that they have. It’s a way through technology that we can still be interactive without physically meeting together.”
Mitchell also believes the pandemic is causing more people to be interested in church. And he is glad that churches are able to provide online services for these people so easily.
“You have some that didn’t attend church at all and they’re now thinking more about it. And through this virus, and things like this happen, gets people thinking about matters of faith. About God, eternity.”
According to Mitchell, there are at least a dozen different churches in Fayette County using live streams right now. Some churches are even broadcasting their services on local radio, and others conduct drive-thru services, where patrons stay in their vehicles outside to avoid contact with others.
There’s no telling how long it will be until normal church services can resume, but until then, it’s not difficult at all to still be a part of a church’s community