Communications and Technology Committee Report – July 2020

The situation surrounding COVID-19 continues to unfold in our city of Jacksonville. However, through technology, we have managed to stay focused on God, our church, and each other. The Communications and Technology Committee has worked to bring church services to your homes through our websites, and the pandemic has forced St. Philip’s members to also embrace the use of technology.  Many church members have further expanded our communication gap with virtual Prayer Services, Bible Study, Disciple Enrichment, and Zoom Happy Hours.  

Our ministries and activities have allowed us to reach out to each other for strength, guidance, courage, and to spread the word of God. We are now meeting on conference call lines, Zoom meetings, Facebook, Realm, and our website.  It has truly been refreshing to see members now using technology in many forms, including eGiving, which they did not do when we were in church together.   

We will never go back to the way in which we communicated with each other in the past.  This is a great thing because we have all learned to adapt to this new way of staying connected.  As creative pioneer Laurie Anderson said, “Technology is the campfire around which we tell our stories.” This has certainly started to become our unofficial mantra.

It has been our committee’s goal to assist St. Philip’s in staying connected through the pandemic, and with the assistance of Father Dennis, Mother JoAnn, and our Junior Warden Laurie Johnson, we’ve been able to produce virtual church services every week for the past 4 months. With the reopening of our church on June 21st, we’ve enhanced our production capabilities to offer a real-time live stream of our Sunday morning services. We will continue to evolve and adjust in order to stay connected as one body in Christ.  

It is now time for the committee to embrace the projects that we were working on before the pandemic became a part of our lives.  We will be meeting soon to complete the work for the new website, social media campaigns, web procedures, internal and external communications, and our new tech help desk. Most of all, we want to continue to expand communications with our church, future members, and our community.  

I want to thank the Communication and Technology Committee members for their contributions towards keeping us connected; Athlene Jones the Web Administrator, Dorothy Holder, Luvenia Exson, Kris Munroe, Earl Munroe, Noel McKetty, Edward Witsell, Michael Phelts, Curtis Crews, Chawnette McKenny, Nelson Estrella, and Arlene Jones. Also, I want to give special thanks to our organist, Cedric Williams, and our Senior Warden, Ed Wright for their assistance during our video production and live streaming sessions.

We are here to serve St. Philip’s.     

Arelia Donaldson

Communications and Technology Committee Chairperson