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Welbert’s church services are also seen in Africa

Welbert, the leading pastor of the Church of Christ, with Frank Upfaff (2nd from right) with a part of the production team. Next to him is Timo Strobel, two young employees of the team. Photo: Personal

Welbert. For a year now, there has been a live stream of church services at Christ Church in Welbert. Since then, 175 services have been “broadcast”, reaching Africa and other countries. Older community members want to be fulfilled in addition to media offers.

“We are delighted that our volunteers have achieved this year,” said Frank Upfoff, Senior Pastor of the Church of Christ, when he received the numbers for the one-year live stream from the CGV, which was presented as “the live stream during the one-year divine service”. Timo Strobel, one of the founders of CGV’s “Production Team”, is pleased with the pastor: “We produced 110 services with 175 hours of livestream. About 64,000 clicks were recorded on Welbert’s offers. “

Even before the first official lockout, the church leadership of Christ Church decided not to hold a face-to-face service in March 2020. It was suspended until May. “We made the decision on Thursday and were online with our first church service stream on Friday evening. Our young people had a sophisticated LED wall at the church in Banhofstras as a test and loan – so it was used immediately,” explains Strobel, part of the CGV community management team.

A team of 30 people from all departments has joined together. Three people for the cameras, the control of the lighting technology, the sound technician, the image direction, the projector and the image feed, all have to be organized and integrated. “It takes six to eight employees on a technical page to stream a service directly on YouTube.

“Our church service from Welbert is followed all over Germany, Africa and other countries,” says Pastor Uff, who said it was important that the services were well prepared. Often, the main messages of the sermons are highlighted with pictures. “It needs good arrangements and serious communication to work. We are now in a good position with our church services. But some things go wrong when the internet is overloaded or computers are on strike,” he smiles.

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At the same time, the pastor is important to all, despite all the professionalism, human intimacy, spontaneity and the opportunity to participate. “We like it when people talk in the stream about their personal faith experiences or send spontaneous thoughts about the service via the Messenger service or write in the chat.” To encourage this, the church has also set up a telephone hotline where direct pastoral counseling and prayer can be obtained.

Community feedback shows that technological possibilities do not have to be a barrier for the older generation. Likewise, a small prayer service takes place in the CGV every evening in Zoom, which continues for more than a year, generating great interest after dinner, after dinner. Praying about zoom? “Yes, the experiences are very positive, and the older ones like it too – they practice well with a little practice,” the pastor said.