Changes To How We Communicate

What a complex and challenging year and a half we’ve had! Covid-19 has shaken the church in many different ways, some of them positive, some of them less so. It’s made us review all of our systems and processes as we seek to keep the church a Covid Secure environment, and as we encourage people to ‘not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing’ (Hebrews 10:25). We’ve adapted to enable online groups and services, and more recently, we’ve enjoyed being back together on Sundays to sing worship to God together.

One of the areas we’re changing and simplifying is how we communicate with one another within the church. We recognise that sometimes we’ve bombarded church members with all kinds of messages about groups and activities - and sometimes the noise can be deafening! We’re sorry for the times when we’ve ‘pinged’ your phone with WhatsApp and SMS too many times on the same day.

We want to shift the culture of our communication from ‘passive hearing’ to ‘active listening’. This means we’re trusting adult members of our church family to take responsibility for finding out the information about church activities that is relevant to them. For our part, we will simplify and streamline how, where and when we communicate.

From this autumn, you can expect:

  1. The website Calendar and Connect Groups pages to be kept up-to-date, as well as latest stories published on our News page. Visit www.sjh.org.uk to check out these pages. (We’ll also be launching a new website in November which will be easier to navigate.)
  2. We will create a weekly Church Family News video, to share relevant information that affects the whole church.
  3. We will send out a weekly Church Family News email, with links to the video, and any other key announcements and events.
  4. We will print a monthly Church Family News handout to distribute at church on Sundays.

We will still share images, stories and videos on our social media pages - Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. It’s up to you whether you want to follow us on these social media platforms.

We will be closing down the St John’s Hoxton WhatsApp group and Facebook group. We will use whole church SMS messages sparingly, although we will still use SMS messages for rota reminders. WhatsApp groups will still be used for individual ministry teams and connect groups - and team / connect group leaders will moderate these groups to make sure they’re used constructively. 

Finally, we encourage every member of our church family with access to a digital device to sign up for My ChurchSuite - where you can join Connect Groups, check and confirm your rota responsibilities, find contact information for other church members, sign up to events and manage your giving.

To help those in our church family who do not have online access or devices suitable for My ChurchSuite or the website, we will make sure our welcome team on Sunday mornings can help members sign up for groups and events. Any of our staff will be happy to help church members with team rotas, connect groups, events and giving. You can always phone the office on 020 7739 9302.

We hope these changes will be helpful, and that you will all feel clear about where to go for information about how to stay involved in the life of our church. It’ll be up to you to decide where you go to find information about how we can support one another in our Christian faith.

Whoever has ears, let them hear! (Matthew 11:15)