Human resources from churches contribute to technology-enhanced religion. There are new needs. Existing church personnel, volunteers, leaders, clergy, members and congregants have talent, abilities to learn and new routines to incorporate as useful to their respective roles. The subjects and tasks range from website content management, to website design, to website programming, to emailing production, to emailing content creation, to hosting virtual or mixed physical-and-virtual meetings, to managing software accounts with different providers, to maintaining personal information on members, congregants and other users of church services, to social-media presence, to closed-circuit text-chat groups, to coordinating an extranet of activities with decentralized metadata, to network administration, to managing shared secured files, to video, to lighting, to sound, to makeup, to video editing, to sound editing, to video effects, to password management, to synchronizing content from website to paper newsletter to ad-board to emailing, to database querying and interfacing, to electronic calendar and room reservation management, to email account management, to tech support for congregants to better welcome them, to computer classes, to physical maintenance of computers, to maintaining the systems and software of computers, and other things to reinforce ultimately digital-and-in-person relationship. The key is for places of worship to provide opportunities for personnel to avail themselves with knowledge, know-how and confidence. I have witnessed this myself with the evolution of centering prayer on Thursday nights at the American Church where a self-professed technophobe has progressed from asking members to synchronize prayer by mechanical watch to hosting that same prayer on the ubiquitous video-conferencing software (which may not actually be an improvement).
We have to try.
On the one hand, we have a whole new series of temporary impositions. On the other hand, we have a new portfolio of mature technologies available to places of worship that were previously beyond reach. Also, practicing these technologies should develop abilities applicable elsewhere in life and could also increase effectiveness of church work and ministry. Discernment defines "shall." Revealed abilities concern the whole congregation and all staff.
In this present time between Passover and Easter, we are again called to do everything we can to avoid:
all undue exposure to the risk of Covid contagion; and
any undue exposure to the risk of Covid contagion because carelessness is more contagious than Covid itself ^16.
The Cathedral will hold Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter Services foregoing an outdoor procession. Saint Michael's will hold more restricted and fewer services, because the mid-March re-confinement. The American Church has canceled all indoor services, but plans to hold an Easter sunrise service on the Seine. Will the Cathedral live-cast the service? Will Saint Michael's integrate those outside in the walls for the service, or hold one live and one on-line service? How will the American Church, in a most obvious exercise of its prerogative as a religion with rights afforded that other types of gathering do not have, use the special permission it has obtained from the Prefecture ^17? All of these questions ultimately depend also on the resources and the abilities of the congregation and of the staff, including technological abilities ^18.