Since the beginning of the COVID-19 epidemic and the lockdowns that state governments have imposed, people have been using online resources to try to maintain some sense of normalcy in their everyday lives. Organizations have turned to Moss to help them set up the technology necessary for live streaming events and staying in contact with customers, members, parishioners, students, and supporters. Even in lockdown life must go on.
Live Streaming Important Moments
Many different organizations have the same goal of maintaining communication with their members during this time when they cannot physically be together. Schools have utilized cloud systems that allow for remote learning, including watching lectures, uploading assignments, or interacting with other students on group projects. Businesses have also had to improve their network infrastructure so that their employees can still be productive while working from home.
Churches are another type of organization that has confronted significant challenges to remain in touch with their members. Some churches were already live streaming their services for the elderly or home bound, but they were not the norm. Most activity that happens in churches is experienced as a group. Since it’s difficult to replicate that experience online and budgets are limited, most churches didn’t bother. Then the lockdown happened. Now the only way their church members can continue to see and experience each other and worship together is online.
Churches: A Unique Challenge
Many of the organizations that Moss assists, like schools, hospitals, and businesses, already have IT departments and people dedicated to making technology work in that organization. Churches are different in that regard. While very large mega churches may have IT staff, most churches rely on volunteers or support staff to work sound systems or the lighting during church services. No one is in charge of making sure that live streaming is working because it’s not something that they do. Additionally, many churches have older buildings and outdated electrical infrastructure that makes adding technology harder.
Even before the lockdown in Michigan happened, the Diocese of Grand Rapids canceled masses for all of their parishes. As a result the Basilica of St. Adalbert contacted Moss to assist in adding live streaming as a capability so their parishioners could still participate in mass. Located on Grand Rapids’ West Side, St. Adalbert’s 100-year-old church building has phenomenal acoustics. It’s regularly used by music groups throughout West Michigan for performances. It also has an active music program and a large pipe organ that adds much to the experience of mass there.
Moss worked with the staff of St. Adalbert to add the necessary equipment for live streaming and train them in what was needed to operate it. Now every Sunday parishioners can view mass via the Basilica of St. Adalbert’s Facebook page. With lockdown restrictions loosening somewhat, the Diocese of Grand Rapids is allowing churches to open in a limited capacity at the end of May. This means that some people will be able to experience mass in person again. For those who cannot be there because of health issues or other concerns, however, live streaming gives them a way to remain a part of their church community and not miss important moments.