Weathering a Year of COVID-19
Mosaic Fellowship in Chattanooga, TN
2020 was full of an array of challenges for church planters, from the pandemic to the politically charged atmosphere of a presidential election. Hear from Greg Baney, church planting pastor at Woodlands Gathering in Soddy Daisy, TN, about these challenges and God’s faithfulness.
One of the most significant challenges faced by Woodlands Gathering during this time was the need to be innovative in networking and outreach. Without mass outreach gatherings due to the pandemic, our ability to build relationships within the local community was delayed.
We are working to primarily reach Native Americans who were hit at a higher rate by COVID than the majority culture. The threat of community spread accompanied by historical trauma from communicable diseases created a unique array of challenges, which were met head-on by creating virtual space(s) for cultural exchange among the national and local Native communities. Pow wows, a regionalized opportunity for gathering and reuniting with former acquaintances and fellow-natives, were taken online as well as a plethora of other communal activities. This presented Woodlands Gathering with a virtual audience that would have otherwise been inaccessible.
We developed a weekly podcast called Sacred Wonder, a venture that we probably would not have considered had it not been for the pandemic. Consequently, we have extended our ministry influence throughout Tennessee, North Georgia, and more than fourteen other states.
Even though the pandemic limited our large-group activities, we witnessed our first convert to the faith during this time. Praise God! This is one of the marvelous reminders that God is always working, even when we least expect it.