Faith & Family - Cullman, Alabama Spring 2020 - Page 23

a familiar smiling face that can bring joy and cheer to your life, even if that person is on a video screen. But there are numerous types of families that are using modern technology to bring people closer together. Church families are using streaming technology to send services across the internet and allow home-bound members to watch as well as others in the congregation. We have seen the benefits of that firsthand during the COVID-19 crisis, as church buildings across the country were closed due to stay-at- home orders. However, instead of canceling services, church pastors and worship leaders adapted and held church online, streaming the service through Facebook and other platforms in order to reach the congregation. The singing and preaching might have been done in an empty sanctuary — or in some cases, the living room of the pastor’s home — but the message was the same. Without technology, churches would be silent during a time when they were most needed — a time of crisis. Many people bemoan the prevalence of social media in our lives and how it is taking the place of face-to-face interaction. I agree with much of that, and I do think there is nothing that can take the place of meeting and speaking with someone face to face. But many times, that is not possible. It is in those times where technology, whether it be through a FaceTime call with a baby who lives hundreds of miles away, a church service streamed through Facebook or friends having a group meeting through Zoom, can bring us closer than we ever thought we could be. April 2020 | Faith & Family 23