By CHESKA LIM
For the past three Sundays, Birchcliff Bluffs United Church has been uploading services on Youtube in order to be socially connected with its community during the COVID- 19 crisis.
As Good Friday and Easter Sunday approach, Rev. Gregory Daly has a message to share with the community in and around Birchcliff Bluffs United and beyond.
“You’re not alone,” he said in an interview with Beach Metro News earlier this week. “We are in this together.”
Every Sunday morning at 9 a.m., a Youtube link is sent out via email, letting congregation members know that the latest service has been posted onto the church’s channel.
A notice on the church’s Facebook page and website is also displayed to inform the broader community of the online availability of the services.
“We’ve been trying to add volunteers from the church and from the community who are interested in participating [in the virtual service],” Daly said.
The church’s musician, Randy Vancourt, then compiles the submitted content into one video which is posted on YouTube.
“It wouldn’t happen without him,” Daly said.
According to Daly, a majority of the church’s community consists of senior citizens, many of whom are now living alone.
To combat feelings of loneliness within the community, Daly hosts Coffee Conversations every Tuesday at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m on the video conference platform Zoom.
During these times of self-isolation, social distancing and the closures of places where groups of people gather together, the Zoom meetings answer the many questions and concerns that seniors in the community have, he said.
During these calls, members of the church come together to express their frustrations, anxieties, joys and good news to familiar faces.
“Even though the physical building is closed, that doesn’t mean the church is closed. The church has always been… more than just the walls that it sits in,” Daly said.
To learn more about the online church service times at Birchcliff Bluffs United, please visit https://www.bbuc.ca/