Zoom is an online meeting program that is free to use. It works on computers, smart phones and tablets.
Churches are using Zoom to host committee meetings, Bible studies, home groups, youth work and Sunday services. Some churches are even using it for virtual town halls to update members about changes and safety measures during lockdown.
|Have you tried Meetn, the new online meeting platform?
It’s turning out to become a decent alternative to Zoom and to the other major platforms.
Host a Meeting
While there are many livestreaming platforms, Zoom is specifically designed for churches and has features that make it easier to use than some other options. It is also more flexible, which makes it better suited for church groups that may not have the time or resources to do a traditional streaming setup.
When you create a meeting in Zoom, there are several important settings to consider. First, choose a time zone to ensure that participants are all on the same page. Next, decide if you want the meeting to be private or open. Some churches prefer to have meetings be completely open while others want them to be more private and by invitation only.
You can also enable muting for all participants upon joining to avoid disruptive feedback and noise. Finally, you can decide if you want the host to be automatically admitted into the meeting or if you want to admit people one by one.
Set Up a Meeting
Some churches are using Zoom for online worship and meetings instead of traditional streaming platforms like Facebook. One advantage is that Zoom allows for more interaction and a more tailored experience. It also removes some of the issues that can come with free streaming platforms such as adware and content filters that can block certain types of media.
When you start a Zoom meeting, you should log on early to ensure that your connection is working well. Log on at least five minutes before your scheduled start time to give yourself a chance to address any technical issues. You can also engage in premeeting chatter to help participants get comfortable and prepare for the virtual service.
During the meeting, you should mute your microphone unless you are speaking to avoid introducing unwanted noise to the session. You can check your microphone status in the Settings menu. You can also set the meeting to be password-protected or to require a code to join, which can protect your privacy and prevent unintended guests from joining.
Share a Link
During the COVID-19 pandemic many churches have found Zoom to be a great way to host meetings such as prayer groups, Bible study, home group and youth work. While other live streaming platforms such as YouTube or Facebook may also be used, Zoom is designed specifically to serve and minister to church communities.
Using the Zoom desktop client, simply click Create Meeting and enter all of the required information. Once the meeting details are saved a link will automatically be generated that you can share by copying and pasting.
The break out rooms feature of Zoom can be a great tool to use for bible study or other classlike sessions. This allows participants to break into smaller groups for discussion and can be re-assigned to the main zoom room when the session is over. Alternatively, the general screen sharing and chat function could be used to engage with participants. Just remember to mute yourself on entry to avoid accidentally introducing ambient noise or showing inappropriate content.
Participate in a Meeting
Zoom’s free version allows participants to connect automatically via mobile apps, desktop and tablet applications, a browser app or by dialing in. This can be particularly useful for those not comfortable with installing software or using a web application hybrid.
To join a meeting click the Zoom meet link in an email or calendar invitation, an instant messaging invite, a mobile app or the Zoom web portal. If you are joining from a web browser, a pop-up window will prompt you to download the application or use a different method for connecting.
When prompted, allow Zoom to access your microphone and camera. Enter a display name and click Join. You may also wish to select the Remember my name for future meetings check box. To speak during the meeting, click the “Raise your hand” button located at the center of the control bar. You can also mute and unmute your microphone. You can also share your screen by clicking the icon.