Experiments
March 22, 2021

House Church via Zoom


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Submitted by Miguel Cruz, West Coram Deo House Church

Category: Worship

Because of COVID, we have had to make adjustments to how we do worship. While a lot of churches have gone to live streaming, we wanted to keep the more intimate, interactive nature of our worship time as a house church. In the warmer months we were able to meet outside in our backyard. During the winter that didn’t work for us (being in Michigan). So I developed a new flow for the worship time. We meet via Zoom.

We have been using the responsive liturgy of the Book of Common Prayer (2019), which is conveniently offered at https://www.dailyoffice2019.com (lots of customization options for which prayers get plugged in). This allows us to engage in responsive prayer, using the screen share function, and then no one needs to have a prayer book – just their device. I have everyone mute themselves, except one household, who leads the responsive portion. Then everyone else can say the prayers along with those leading the response. (If everyone is unmuted, the sound comes in at different times, and it’s too cacophonous.)

We also value singing worship songs together. At first I tried playing my guitar over Zoom, but the sound quality was not good. So we have switched to using worship music that I play off iTunes using the screen share (which includes an audio share function, so the audio is piped directly to their speakers). I have the lyrics ready on a pdf, so they can sing along with the worship songs while looking at the screen. We all mute during the worship songs and some of us turn off our video, so we can engage in the worship freely without feeling self-conscious of others looking at us.

After the songs we have our time in the Word, and using Zoom allows us to keep the format interactive and discussion-based, which is our typical pattern for the sermon time in our house church. Overall, it has kept us very well-connected and given us a nice pattern for prayer, singing and time in the Word.

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