Baptist and Reflector
Editor’s Note: The following information was submitted by Carol Wallace, a member of First Baptist Church, Fall Branch.
Over the past year, since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Facebook Live and Zoom meetings have been used for streaming church services. These have become a part of the “new normal” and have been very useful for communicating.
But what about those without computer access who are unable to attend church services?
This challenge has been turned into an opportunity for the Adult Ladies I & II and Ladies of Faith Sunday School Classes at First Baptist Church, Fall Branch.
Kathie Depew, Ladies I & II Sunday School class teacher, was challenged to find a way to reach out to the class to continue to meet on a weekly basis.
Many of these ladies do not have home computers. Church services at First Baptist, as many other churches, had been canceled temporarily due to the pandemic. Depew loves her Sunday School class and prayed they could find a way to continue having class under restricted circumstances.
The Lord provided the answer in the middle of the night, when Depew sensed that He was telling her, “You have iPhones — use them!”
Depew remebered the “add call and merge call” feature on her phone — which allows five calls per phone — and decided to use this feature as a means of having Sunday School. This method has proven to work for many who are involved at FBC.
One by one, each class is added into the teleconference, either by home or mobile phone. While each person is waiting for others to be added to the teleconference, there is time to talk and share until everyone has been connected. Then Sunday School begins.
This process is repeated for three classes each Sunday, and the class has grown to 25-30 attendees. Family members and friends have also joined this Sunday School by phone.
Many of those who have been unable to attend Sunday School for years, due to physical restraints, have taken this opportunity to study and worship together. Spirits are being lifted through the study of God’s Word, sharing prayer requests, covering church bulletin news and having fellowship with one another.
When the Ladies I & II Sunday School Class resumes in person, Depew hopes to include those that are homebound by continuing to call/teleconference from the classroom.
Since April 2020, Ladies of Faith Class, taught by Kristi Sanders, has continued Sunday School live using the class Facebook page.
Each Sunday, Depew goes “live” to teach and then posts the lesson recording on the class Facebook page. Ladies of Faith are now meeting in person, but some members are unable to attend due to health concerns, family obligations and weekend job requirements. This flexibility allows individuals to stay active with Sunday School.
It is not conventional Sunday School, but we serve a God who can use unconventional means and those who are willing to serve to accomplish His purposes.
Kathie and Kristi are quick to give God the glory for the success of this ministry, saying “Jesus made this possible. Praise His Holy Name.”
Fall Branch First Baptist is currently holding in person worship service as well as online. The church is excited and thankful for innovative ways developed during COVID-19 to share the gospel. B&R