Religious communities are built on showing up to their place of worship. Sharing space is an age old tradition. Mosques, synagogues, and churches, all of these institutions invite members of the community to be social and worship. It’s within these four walls that people take time out of their schedules to come together to pray as a collective.
When a community prays together the power of their energy is profound. It sets up the space to feel uplifted and moved. The more people present, the more the community shares the benefits. With the trials and tribulations everyone experiences in life, prayer groups are more effective than ever, providing the community with an outlet of love and support in times of need, worry, trouble and doubt. That’s why video conferencing has been so beneficial for prayer circles, prayer lines, and any event that brings the community closer together and to their faith.
But let’s face it. Making it out to a prayer circle isn’t always within our grasp. Meetings run late, and kids need to be picked up. With frantic lives spread so thin, schedules need to be accommodated and commitments honored. Sadly, the fabric of tight-knit communities is getting looser and looser. Finding a time and place to show up in person is getting increasingly difficult as people move out to more rural areas or find themselves juggling between work and home life.
Prayer groups have had to find a new way to exist. By incorporating video conferencing into sermons, prayer lines and hosted events, people can still continue to live enriched lives without having to choose one commitment over another. Setting up video conferencing and conference calling for a prayer group bridges the gap between people’s lives and their faith – and it couldn’t be easier to set up.
Contact the leader of your group. Using video conferencing technology, consider how the prayer group will take shape. Do you want members to call in and have the leader address each prayer individually? Perhaps it’s a communal meeting where an individual topic is selected, the verses are already chosen and everyone prays in unison. What is the focus of the conference call or video chat? Consider taking requests or focusing on that specific topic that touches everyone’s life. Another way is to hold an open space at the same time every month, week or day for people to show up to speak their truth in more of a roundtable discussion style of approach.
Consider the flow of the conference call or video chat. Is it the same leader every meet-up? Does it switch? What does the leader say to welcome everyone and end the discussion? Make sure to set guidelines for the prayer time so the conference call or video chat is productive and starts and ends punctually. Guidelines should touch upon how someone introduces themselves; how to present their prayer; how much time they have; what they should speak about; etc. Providing a short etiquette guide to each member before participation will help keep everyone on the same page for an effective prayer group.
It’s about recruiting members and spreading the word of the prayer group. Select video conferencing software that has an easy-to-import Address Book and an automatic Invitations and Reminders feature that can send out notifications in advance. It’s important every member has the log in details before the conference call or video chat starts – that includes the number to call, steps how to log on, etc.
It’s also a good idea to remind members about the upcoming conference call and video chat logistics, like calling in a few minutes ahead of time, testing out the technology before the call; providing an email contact for support; muting their phones if they’re not talking; introducing their name and location before speaking, etc.
Looking for a more outlined, step-by-step guide to setting up your own prayer line or prayer group? Download our FREE detailed e-book right here that will walk you through everything you need to know.
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