Category Archives: bible study

Worship in Times of the Corona-Virus

Picture: People from four continents contribute to the worship service by videoconference

by Gyburg Beschnidt

The International Baptist Church Berlin did not cancel their worship service as many churches did but chose a different form of meeting: a videoconference. 65 computers and mobiles were connected and about a hundred people worshiped together. That was less than on other Sundays but a lot for a meeting which was announced only a day earlier.

Many people in the congregation know videoconferences from their workplace and from the weekly conversations with Scott Corwin. On Tuesday nights, they join him on to discuss the sermon and the plans of the church. Now, all worship services, workshops and prayer meetings will take place as videoconferences at least until Easter. Members and friends were invited by email with links and QR-Codes. Further information was also distributed via WhatsApp and Telegram Messenger. In addition, an online “Vacation”-Bible school is planned for next week.

The form of the worship service was similar to the usual format. However, songs were only accompanied by a guitar, not the praise team. Of course, there was also a sermon and prayers. Prayer requests were collected via chat. The beamer-presentation was visible on monitors – and in a window the activity in the church. Instead of an offering, the congregation was invited to contribute to the bank account of the church. Of course, some things still need to be improved technically: A camcorder observes things differently than a person. People need to learn the functions of the program and they have to accept the different atmosphere. There is a warm welcome … only via the chat and no hugs. The coffee after church is not provided. But in a time of social distancing, it helps to enjoy the fellowship of brother and sisters and to receive the blessing of God.

Gottesdienst in der Coronavirus-Ära

Auf dem Bild: Menschen aus vier Kontinenten gestalten den Gottesdienst der IBC Berlin als Videokonferenz

von Gyburg Beschnidt

Die International Baptist Church in Berlin sagte ihren Gottesdienste am letzten Sonntag nicht wie viele andere Gemeinden aufgrund des Coronavirus ab, sondern wählte eine andere Form der Zusammenkunft: eine Videokonferenz. 65 Geräte waren miteinander vernetzt und damit feierten ungefähr hundert Menschen gemeinsam Gottesdienst. Das ist zwar weniger als an anderen Sonntagen, aber doch eine beachtliches Zahl für eine Veranstaltung, zu der erst am Samstag eingeladen wurde.

Viele aus der Gemeinde kennen Videokonferenzen von ihrer Arbeitsstelle oder dem wöchentlichen Gesprächskreis von Scott Corwin. Sie wählen sich regelmäßig am Dienstagabend bei ein, um mit dem Pastor über die Predigt und die Pläne in der Gemeinde zu sprechen. Nun werden zunächst bis Ostern alle Gottesdienst, Workshops und Gebetstreffen als Video-Konferenzen veranstaltet. In einer Mail wurden Mitglieder und Freunde bereits mit Links und QR-Codes dafür eingeladen. Weitere Informationen werden auf Wunsch auch per WhatsApp und Telegram Messenger versandt. Zudem ist eine “Ferien”-Bibelschule in der nächsten Woche geplant.

Der Gottesdienstablauf war im Wesentlichen wie sonst: Gebete, Predigt und Lieder, diesmal allerdings nur begleitet von einer Gitarre, nicht von einem Lobpreis-Team. Über die Chat-Funktion wurden Gebetsanliegen gesammelt. Die Beamer-Präsentationen waren auf dem Bildschirm sichtbar – und in einem kleinen Fenster die Beteiligten in der Kirche. Statt einer Kollekte wurde die Kontonummer der Gemeinde eingeblendet. Natürlich kann noch einiges technisch verbessert werden: Eine Kamera nimmt manches anders wahr als eine Person, manche Funktionen des Programms muss man erst lernen und auch die andere Atmosphäre muss man akzeptieren. Es gibt herzliche Begrüßungen nur über den Chat und den Kaffee nach dem Gottesdienst muss man selber machen, aber ein Gottesdienst hilft in einer Zeit der “Sozialen Distanzierung” die Gemeinschaft mit Schwestern und Brüdern zu pflegen und sich den Segen Gottes zusprechen zu lassen.

Worship Services Moving ONLINE ONLY

Starting tomorrow — Sunday 15. March — IBCB’s Sunday worship service will move ONLINE ONLY between now and Easter.

As we seek to make responsible decisions as a church family and in keeping with the Bundesgesundheitsministerium recommendations, we ask you to stay at home and join our worship service ONLINE.

You’ll be able to join us virtually as we broadcast our singing, Scripture reading, praying, and preaching. We can continue to encourage and support each other during this unusual time while doing our part to reduce the chances of spreading the Covid-19 virus.

Click the image above or this link HERE to watch the video explanation.

Join the worship service each Sunday at 12:30 h by clicking HERE.

We see this as an opportunity for us to be the church and connect with each other in creative, hope-filled ways. If you have questions or if you have a need, please, reply to this email.

Covid-19 — IBCB Precaution and Prevention

Media outlets report significant outbreaks of a novel coronavirus (Covid-19) in China, South Korea, and Italy. Particularly pertinent to our situation, the outbreak in South Korea has been traced to its spread in a church community.

According to the German Bundesgesundsheitministerium:

“At present, there is no indication to suggest a sustained virus circulation in Germany.

Nevertheless, the following precautions are recommended: proper hand hygiene, cough and sneeze etiquette, as well as keeping one’s distance from sick persons. These practices also protect against other acute respiratory illnesses, including the flu and are therefore recommended, also in view of the flu outbreak.”

So, here are some best practices for you to employ and to teach your kids in order to protect yourselves and to prevent the virus’ spread in our church community:

  1. If you have a fever and are coughing or sneezing, stay home.
  2. Practice proper cough and sneeze etiquette by using a handkerchief, tissue, or your sleeved elbow. (Carry a handkerchief and/or tissue.)
  3. Practice proper hand hygiene and wash your hands frequently. (Bring hand sanitizer to use before and after frequent contact with others.)

Here’s what you can expect on Sunday’s @ IBCB. When you arrive, we will provide hand sanitizer for you to use before entering. If you need tissues, we will have tissues available for your use. Be understanding of those who prefer to refrain from shaking hands or hugging as a form of greeting. Try a different form of greeting like bowing or waving.

Should it become necessary — depending upon the development of the virus’ spread and the recommendations of the Bundesgesundsheitministerium — we will take additional precautions to help protect our church community and to prevent the virus’ spread.