by Pastor JT
Back in the fall of 2023, as a part of our conversations in creating a new church structure, we sent out a survey to learn more about congregational preferences in a number of areas. One question we asked was how the congregation preferred communication from the church. Overwhelmingly, email was the top response.
We’ve also spent this time thinking about how to better let the community around us know more about our church and what we’re doing in the world. Through our conversations these last few months, we’ve learned there is considerable interest in reaching out to our community more. We’re just not sure the best way to do that yet.
Thirdly, we understand the helpful nature of our quarterly newsletter, The Spire, that gives all of us in the First Parish community a longer view of our future: to see where we are now and what programs and events are on the horizon, not just for this week, but the coming season and beyond.
This winter, we’ve spent some time reflecting on how we might address all of our different learnings we’ve had throughout these conversations. As we reflected, these three particular learnings seemed to line up together. And we wondered: how might we better reach the community beyond the church while also streamlining communication within the church? Thus, we came up with the idea for an experiment: what if we tried a new form for the Spire?
Our idea is to create a blog-style newsfeed for our website, offering the same information we provide to the Spire, but doled out on a focused weekly basis. Our goal is to give one of our ministries a spotlight each week, and to rotate that spotlight among our ministries, so we can keep a running source of information on our website for anyone to read whenever they need it, both within the congregation and from the wider community around us. Then, we’ll incorporate that information into our weekly Constant Contact emails while also sharing it across social media.
Of course, because this is an experiment, where we start may not be where we end up, and we’re always looking for more ideas to incorporate into this experiment that will help us efficiently and effectively communicate about the church both to our congregation and to the wider community.
But we also realize that this form of communication is not for everyone. And we don’t want to leave anyone behind. So, for those that would still like a physical copy of the Spire, please contact the church office so we can occasionally send you a collection of these posts.
But our hope is that this new form of the Spire is helpful, convenient, informative, and timely, so that we can all be better informed about the great things coming next in the life of First Parish. So here’s to the start of something new, and the blessings that may come from it.