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2020 SMALL (ORDINARY) CHURCH WORKSHOP

THE ORDINARY CHURCH IN EXTRAORDINARY TIMES

The EPC Smaller Church Network presented a four-part webinar in May-June 2020 that explored what we are learning about our churches as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the context of the significance of the small church, each week’s 90-minute webinar focused on a key challenge we have faced—and how each of them could become an opportunity for greater ministry impact. Each week’s presentation was led by EPC pastors who are themselves small (ordinary) church practitioners. 

Use these quicklinks to navigate to the appropriate section:

Session 1: A Pastoral Approach to Reconnecting
Session 2: The Life of the Church—Inside and Out!
Session 3: Facing the Financial Impact
Session 4: The Tech Challenge—Its Use, Purpose, and Value for the Future

SPEAKERS

Zack Eswine

Lead Pastor
Riverside Church
Webster Groves, Missouri

Josh Modrzynski

Pastor
Riceville Valley Community Church
Asheville, North Carolina

Doug Walker

Pastor
River City Church
DeBary, Florida

Roy A. Yanke

Executive Director
PIR Ministries
Farmington Hills, Michigan

SESSION 1

A PASTORAL APPROACH TO RECONNECTING

As leaders—Teaching and Ruling Elders together—called to shepherd the flock, this presentation examines the spiritual and emotional impact of the pandemic on our people, on us as leaders, and the teaching opportunities this presents. We also look at what we have discovered about working together as a Session to navigate the challenges.

SESSION 2

THE LIFE OF THE CHURCH—INSIDE AND OUT!

In this segment we engage with our church family life and connection—how it has grown or lessened—during this time. Questions like “Has the value of meeting physically become more apparent?” “Where have we seen opportunities beyond our walls to impact our communities?” and “Has our sense of doing important and significant work increased?” inform our discussion.

USDA Farmers to Families

Roy Yanke referenced this resource in his presentation

SESSION 3

FACING THE FINANCIAL IMPACT

The economic impact of the pandemic has not passed the church by. This session explores what that impact looks like, as well as what the future might hold. Also addressed is the importance of deciding how we will assess our options and how we will measure church vitality, as well as the impact on the pastoral role going forward.

SESSION 4

THE TECH CHALLENGE—ITS USE, PURPOSE, AND VALUE FOR THE FUTURE

The inability to meet in person has forced all of us into new territory. This segment discusses the challenges, successes, and failures of relying (or not relying) on technology to worship, teach, and connect. Our big question to grapple with: “How will technology shape our future ministry—the possibilities and cautions?”

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