Musical worship changes have brought about a unique silver lining at the United Methodist Student Center.
The ability to continue a strong musical presence through the MSC has allowed students to remain connected in their faith during the uncertainty of the pandemic. With creating both outdoor and virtual musical worship experiences for students this semester.
“With the community I have here, specifically at the Methodist Student Center, I feel like in some ways it has brought us a lot closer because we’re having to get a lot more creative with how we interact with each other,” said John Kelly, an agricultural major. “That has been something that has been very beneficial for me in keeping a certain level of calmness when dealing with the anxieties of these unknown times.”
The MSC utilized many safety precautions to continue their live Monday night music outreach this semester with a smaller and socially-distanced praise band, required masks, outdoor congregations of less than ten people and contact tracing when someone enters their building.
“It’s definitely been a major change, but I don’t think change is always a bad thing,” said Gwyni Robinson, an early special education major. “It’s definitely made everybody’s faith stronger in a way because we’re adapting, which is what we have to do as people.”
The semester also brought a new online presence for the MSC as they have incorporated virtual music worship during social media live streams, a weekly Zoom Bible study and prerecorded services each Sunday.
“Worshiping together when we’re virtual is definitely harder, but I feel like anything worth doing is going to be hard at first,” said Robinson, a Covington native. “So rather than do something dangerous and put a lot of people in danger and just continue this outbreak even longer, I think its really good to figure out and find another way to come together, even if its across campus.”
Virtual music worship has now become an opportunity for the MSC to connect beyond their campus ministry as people from North Carolina to Africa have joined their online services.
MSC hopes to continue the virtual meetings alongside their live worship after the pandemic.