Online Church – Practical Lessons from the Frontline


The Church of Ireland Council for Mission will host a webinar on Zoom on Thursday, 3rd June 2021, between 2.00pm and 3.30pm on ‘Online Church – Practical Lessons from the Frontline’.

Over the last year many churches have offered worship online.  Now that we are back in our churches, how could this continue to be a feature of how we connect with people in the future?

Dr Nick Shepherd, who is a member of the Church of England Digital Labs Conference, will be our keynote speaker.  Nick writes: “The last year has seen many churches ‘pivot’ to provide online worship and keep connected as a community through digital means.  Many commentators see this use continuing as ‘hybrid’ models of physical and digital meeting become ‘normal’. This session explores some of missiological and pastoral benefits this might provide and reflects on the theological basis for approaching worship and Christian community in this context.”

Three Church of Ireland rectors from across the island of Ireland will tell their stories of remaining online as the Covid–19 restrictions ease and they share how they believe that live streaming church online can be a missional opportunity.  Each of the rectors will lead a webinar about their online journey, the technologies they have used as well as reflecting on why they do it.   They might also confess some of their many mistakes and bloopers!

The Revd Nicola Halford is rector of Enniscorthy and Monart Union of Parishes in Ferns Diocese, Co. Wexford.  She has a web camera in her church and uses Facebook Live from her smartphone to live–stream her services.

The Revd Andrew Quill is rector of Holy Trinity Dromore, in Clogher Diocese.  Andrew also uses Facebook Live, and has integrated graphics and recorded many hymns and worship songs in the form of videos that can be used in their online services.

The Revd Cliff Jeffers is rector of Fanlobbus Union of Parishes in Cork Diocese and has been using Zoom to stream services online to Facebook and control the video feeds, including PowerPoint and videos of hymns, interviews and parishioners participating live from their homes.

The webinar will be presented on Zoom by the Church of Ireland Council for Mission.  It will be recorded so that those who cannot attend will be able to view it at a later. 

The timetable for the webinar will be as follows:

2.00pm            Welcome – Dean Tim Wright (Kildare) – Council for Mission

2.05pm            Keynote address by Dr Nick Shepherd

2.30pm            Webinar 1 – Revd Nicola Halford – ‘Keeping it simple’

2.40pm            Webinar 2 – Revd Andrew Quill – ‘Integrating graphics and Videos’

2.50pm            Webinar 3 – Revd Cliff Jeffers – ‘Online participation’

3.00pm            Breakout Groups (participants can choose which one they attend).

3.20pm            Plenary session – bringing back together – Revd Adam Pullen

3.30pm            Finish

To book a place at the Online Church – Practical Lessons from the frontline Seminar, please send an email to the Revd Colin McConaghie, the Secretary of the Church of Ireland Council Mission, by Monday, 31st May 2021:

You can follow the Council for Mission on Facebook here and find out more about its role on the Council’s page on the Church of Ireland website.