Introducing the Digital Labs conference

10/09/2020

What did your church online presence look like at the beginning of the year? What does it look like now? What new digital skills have you learnt during lockdown? Most importantly, who have you met this year because of your online presence? We’ve been hearing countless stories from our churches of the individuals they’ve met through their online presence that they just may not have encountered otherwise. This is exciting.

As a team, we’ve worked with colleagues across the Church to put together the weekly online services that have been streamed on the Church of England Facebook page, YouTube channel and IGTV. It was only a few weeks ago that we received a comment from Amanda, sharing how the weekly services had helped her come to faith. We continue to be amazed at how a simple online activity can bring an individual to encounter God in a real and transformative way – perhaps for the first time.

As a team, we are committed to assisting churches with their online presence - not so they can become famous on Facebook, but because there is a real opportunity to meet others just like Amanda. We will continue to equip churches with the skills needed to be effective online, recognising this will look different for every church, and every church has a unique voice.

As we look ahead to this next season and Christmas, we know that digital communication has a crucial part to play in maintaining a connection with our communities who may not all be able to join us in our buildings, and for reaching out locally. Our online presence can’t disappear as we return to our buildings, whenever and however that may look.

As part of our continued commitment to equipping churches, we are excited to announce the Digital Labs conference, a two-day online event, for anyone involved in church digital communications. Whether you are a church with an active online presence, or just getting started – the Digital Labs conference is for you.

 

Digital Labs conference small

 

We’ve gathered a team of industry experts to bring challenging, inspiring and practical advice over the two-day event. You’ll be able to ask questions, attend practical Labs workshops, be inspired by the keynote speakers and network with other attendees.

 

Here, the team share some of the things we are looking forward to most at the conference

 

Adrian Harris, Head of Digital, The Church of England

I'm excited about the opportunity to bring together church communities to discuss more about how digital communications can bring people to faith and grow their faith at this challenging time for many. As part of the keynotes and small groups, we will also be exploring the opportunities with Advent and Christmas 2020. I always find I learn lots at these sessions about the amazing work churches do to serve their communities and share the Christian message in new and innovative ways.

 

Iso Neville, Social Media Manager, The Church of England

Whilst I can't wait to hear from the experts and be part of some exciting conversations at the conference, I'm most looking forward to the days and weeks afterwards - that's the time that I get to see the advice, tips and ideas in action. I'm so excited to see the great content that churches across the country will be inspired to create.

 

James Newhook, Audio Producer, The Church of England

I'm excited to hear from both the speakers and the attendees on what content and digital strategies they have employed, and what has and hasn't worked for them. Hearing from and talking with such a range of churches, organisations and individuals can provide inspiration on how to direct your own work, as well as presenting the opportunity to help others by sharing any knowledge you've gained, particularly in the unprecedented situation we all currently find ourselves in.

 

Amaris Cole, Senior Content Manager, The Church of England

I’m looking forward to the opportunity the conference offers us all to take time to pause. We are going to be joined by inspirational key note speakers from the digital industry, charity sector and broadcasting. I can't wait to hear their practical advice, anecdotes and fresh ideas for us all to consider as navigate the final months of 2020 – and beyond! We've all had to overcome challenges over the last few months, so taking time to stop and think about creative ways to tackle what’s to come – namely Christmas! – will be a welcome chance to reset.

 

Liz Morgan, Church Digital Champion, The Church of England

One of the things I am looking forward to the most is being challenged to think differently. That’s what’s so special when a group of people gather from different fields of expertise, backgrounds, and experience, and share their ideas, thoughts and ask questions. It encourages us all to think differently about the exciting mission field that is online ministry. And, the outcome doesn’t look the same for every church, every church will have their own take on how ideas can be implemented effectively in their own local community. That’s what so exciting to me.

 

Register here for the conference

Digital Labs