How to Launch Online Worship or an Internet Campus for Your Church

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This is a collection of posts from this blog that you might find helpful when considering beginning online worship or an internet campus at your church. These are collected blog posts from my experience as Pastor of Resurrection Online.

Before Launch

Launch

Continued Development

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Church Online within The United Methodist Church

My apologies for a lack of regularity in blogging. I have been in the midst of ending my role in Congregational Care and beginning my new role as Internet Campus Pastor at The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection. I am excited about the possibilities of building a Christian community online where non religious and nominally religious people are becoming deeply committed Christians. You can worship with us at http://live.cor.org – a site which will be continue to be updated in the months ahead.

Will you please send me an email at andrew.conard@cor.org with “Resurrection Internet Campus” in the subject line if you have ideas to share about  shaping the future of church online within The United Methodist Church?

I hope to hear from you soon.

Transition: Pastor of the Resurrection Internet Campus

Beginning November 1, I will be pastor of the Resurrection Internet Campus. Here is the news from the communication to our congregation on Friday.

Did you know that over 1,000 people per weekend worship with us live, on line? These are home bound, folks who are sick, members who are out of town, members who didn’t make it to worship and people who live in other cities. We now have a group of residents at Tall Grass Creek who gathering together to worship using the live webcast every week? We have persons in other parts of the country who want to use our live webcast to start “house churches” or to offer a contemporary worship option in the evenings for their congregations. We anticipate that in the Kansas City area the live web stream will be the entry point for many younger adults who will start worshiping with us online before they ever set foot on one of our campuses. With the appointment of Steven Blair we will focus Andrew Conard’s full attention to developing our Internet Campus and ways to use our Internet webcast to welcome new people to faith and to shepherd them.

You can read the entire email here.

I am excited.

Transition: M-R Pastor of Congregational Care

This week, Bishop Jones announced that Rev. Steven Blair will be appointed to Resurrection on November 1 and will be responsible for those whose last names begin with M through R. You can read the full update to Resurrection here.

I have known Steven for several years and he is an excellent pastor and a great communicator. I believe that his presence at Resurrection will have a positive impact on the entire congregation. I am excited to have the opportunity to be on the same staff and continue to learn from him.

I will be ending my role as pastor of Congregational Care and beginning a role as pastor of Resurrection Internet Campus. I am excited about the potential for in this role and believe that it will be a key part of continuing to build a Christian community where non religious and nominally religious people are becoming deeply committed Christians.

In between the ending of one role and the beginning of another is a time of transition. Over the next 44 days, I invite those of you who are currently part of the M-R pastorate to set up a time to meet with me if you would like to have a one on one conversation about the transition. I hope to arrange an event before November 1 to give you an opportunity to hear about my new role and have an opportunity for closure as I depart my current role.

I care about making a good transition.

I have some ideas about what might be most helpful, but also look to you for guidance. In past pastoral transitions, what has been most helpful for you? What has not been helpful? What guidance do you have for me for making a good transition?

Road Trip for Worship Online

At the recent National Church Leadership Conference, I had the opportunity to be a part of a workshop about pastoring an online network church. The presenter, Reggie Kidd, is part of the leadership at Northland, A Church Distributed. He shared a video which I found to be fascinating, encouraging and hopeful. What do you think?

Internet Campus – What’s in a name?

Is internet campus the right name for what we are seeking to do at Resurrection?

I have been leading a strategic project team for 2009 around the following goal:

In 2009, we’ll expand our connection with online worshipers, launch a pilot “house church” using the live web stream and explore opportunities for launching additional campuses in Kansas City and beyond.

I will become internet campus pastor on July 1, with the above goal being my primary job description. I am not sure that the word “internet” is the best descriptor for a network that would include online worshippers and micro churches (house churches) that would physically meet. So here is what I have been pondering in my mind:

Resurrection Network Campus (Pastor)

Network could refer to internet, but it could also refer to a network of physical groups that meet to worship, grow, give and serve.

What’s in a name? What do you suggest?

Internet Campus Pastor – July 1, 2009

One month from today, I will transition from my role as pastor of congregational care to internet campus pastor. Here is the official announcement in the senior pastor’s eNote:

Andrew Conard will move from his responsibilities of congregational care for persons whose last names begin with N – R and instead he will focus on developing ministries, small groups and providing care for the 1,100 people who are currently worshiping with us online each week and expanding our “Internet Campus.” I’m excited about this as it marks a significant investment in the future. I am convinced that within five years as many people will worship with us online each week as worship in our Sanctuary. We are trying to understand what this means and how we do ministry in this new digital age. We’re also looking at starting “house churches” where people might worship via the webcast in homes.

I am thrilled to have this opportunity and very excited about the potential. I have been working with Clif Guy with a strategic project team made up of congregants – staff and non-staff since the beginning of the year to chart the direction for the ministry.

I am committed to living and leading the purpose of the denomination and the purpose of Resurrection in this role:

  • … to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
  • … building a Christian community where non religious and nominally religious people are becoming deeply committed Christians.

This is going to be a lot of fun.