Tech/Hybrid Services Update from the Board

Dear Members and Friends!

Once again your Board has revisited the recurring problems, issues and concerns regarding our ZOOM technology and the cost in volunteer hours, frustration, and equipment. We appreciate that during the time of peak COVID, we were able to come together virtually via ZOOM, and much credit to those you worked to set up the system.  But as all of you who have tried to participate in services via ZOOM have noted, the patchy sound, the lag time and dropped connections due to the internet availability at Lewis Hall have caused complaints, frustration and withdrawal.  Our dedicated Tech team (thanks Alix, Mary, Catherine, Spencer) spends significant time before, during, and after services to set-up our technology and test the systems. They are tired.

As a board, we are discussing these options:

  1. Invest  signifcant funds in purchasing upgraded network systems for Lewis Hall.  We would need to devote thousands of $ (??) from our bare bones budget to hire a technology consultant to assess our needs, guide our purchase and install and test new equipment.
  2. Not buy equipment but continue as we are, recognizing the limitations and frustrations.  Recruit and train more of us ( you?) to serve on the technology team to reduce the load of our present team.
  3. Return to in-person only services as we had before COVID, and regret  the loss to members and friends who are unable to attend in person.

We’re not asking for a vote, but will continue to gather information and include a recommendation for our Annual Meeting in May.

As we gather information, we also want to hear your reflections on our priorities.

The current vision of who we are trying to reach on Sundays as our membership is people who are sick, or not able to come to services for other reasons and who want to watch at the same Sunday time. 

Now we are asking:

  1. For whom are we running online service? Is it still the same?
  2. How is the spirit of our congregation served by this tech ministry and the great deal of work it involves?

We invite you to listen for your own answers to these 2 questions for a week or so, and share what comes up for you with board members. Once we know who we are doing this for, our way forward may become clearer.

With gratitude,Thank you for your forbearance and support.

And please remember your pledges make any/all of this possible!