We examine how we can reconnect with those restricted by the challenges of aged care living. By Samantha White
The last year has been challenging on many levels and those living in aged care facilities have not been able to interact with the community in the same ways they used to. Going out to catch up with friends or family for a cuppa and a chat just wasn’t an option. Jesus calls Christians to shine like a light for the world. We, as the local church community, wanted to share some of the things we have been doing and we would like to invite you all to join us anytime via YouTube or Zoom for our Sunday services each week at 10am. “Pivoting” seemed to be the theme last year. A year ago, we had to learn many new skills so that we could move our services from something that you walked through the church door and experienced with us, to something you turned on your computer and accessed virtually. Jeremy and his team including ministers, musicians and tech support (particularly those on the sound desk) took those skills and then helped the wider church community For the choir, that meant learning how to practice with Warwick the organist on Zoom – the computer lag made for some funny moments there. For our contemporary service, it meant dealing with how to stay connected when they had to stay apart. Fortunately, some of the church members already had great technical skills that we could call on to produce the weekly service. Jeremy learnt to ignore the bright lights needed for recording, we all learnt how to use a QR code and we’ve all worked out which masks are most comfortable to wear. Whilst the pandemic changed how we stayed connected with each other, it has shown that the connections remain. Our church community states that we want to go, grow and live in Jesus’ love and the way we did that was by staying in touch on the phone, by having groups of 3-5 people who regularly touched base and ensured that no one was forgotten. We continued praying with and for each other, we continued to study God’s word, to worship and to sing and we prayed regularly for those of who were in Aged Care facilities and who were no longer able to have visitors. Now, we’d love to reconnect with our community face to face as well as via our online church. Pastoral visiting and on-site church services are available for those of you who would be interested in this.