Lockdown Online Holy Convocation

At the beginning of the year, the West Zimbabwe Conference (WZC) Stewardship ministries set aside April 13-18, 2020 as the first Holy Convocation week. The department had planned to involve all the pastors from the WZC territory, WZC officers, directors, office workers, union, and sister conference counterparts. At the time, the coronavirus was only in China. Zimbabwe did not even have a single case.

In the wake of COVID-19, many things that we would have done conventionally have not been possible. This even affected the stewardship department whose success is incumbent upon home visitations. The ministry then devised a way to have the Holy Convocation online. We published two-minute English and Ndebele videos and audios. The subjects discussed included but were not limited to: stewardship lessons learned from COVID-19 safety precautions; the Zarephath’s giving during a “hunger lockdown;” Paul and Silas’ lockdown and its stewardship lessons.

We used our Facebook page, YouTube, and Twitter handles to send these messages. These platforms didn’t have the desired impact as it would have done in a regular Holy Convocation setting. Realizing this, we used WhatsApp platforms. The videos were sent to the district pastors, local church stewardship leaders, and a database of the members who had subscribed for stewardship messages. Cumulatively, we reached 7897 traceable members.

WhatsApp engagements were more meaningful as questions arising from the video and audio messages were immediately conveyed either to the district pastor, local church stewardship leader, and the conference director. It was a more personalized contact that communicated warmth to the members. They also felt cared for during this difficult time. In a few reported homes, they used the videos for devotion. Innovative youths wrote the words in the videos verbatim and sent them to their friends, church platforms, and others who did not have enough data to download the videos. Utilizing technology and media has always been a must to reach millennials, but now it reached even the adults.

Watch the Lockdown Online Holy Convocation

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