updated 10am 24 March 2020
1. General Office Operations
With effect from Thursday 19 March 2020 the office of the General Assembly of the PCV will be closed. Staff will be working from home on their regular working days.
The phone number for PCV 03 9650 9311 will be unattended.
Please email your enquiries to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mail through Australia Post will be redirected which will lead to some delays. Email is preferable wherever possible.
We trust that these arrangements will not significantly inconvenience anyone and that we will be able to continue to serve the church community during this challenging time.
We appreciate your understanding and cooperation.
2. The Lord’s Day gathering
Following the Prime Minister’s declaration on 22 March 2020, churches in the state of Victoria are to close from midday, 23 March 2020 in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The following links are to both Commonwealth and Vic state government COVID-19 websites. The moderator encourages the use of them to keep up to date with the latest announcements.
Federal: Prime Minister: https://www.pm.gov.au/media
Commonwealth department of health: https://www.health.gov.au/
Victorian Premier: https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/category/media-release/
Department of Health and Human Services (Victoria): https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/victorian-public-coronavirus-disease-covid-19
The moderator issued a statement on 24 March 2020 clarifying rules relating to meeting together here.
3. Advice for gathering and meeting online
This is not a comprehensive list but here is some advice for those who are planning to gather and meet online.
PIM Congregation Connect
PIM will be hosting a demonstration of Congregation Connect at 4pm AEDT on Wednesday 25 March. To participate click on the link https://pimcongregationconnect.org/b/and-jyu-zyj at about 3.45pm.
If any church is interested in using PIM Connect, please contact Dennis Rayson via the PIM website.
Sharing Pre-recorded Sermons
Some congregations are recording videos beforehand and sharing them via the internet. This can be done via the local church’s website, a facebook page or group, youtube, vimeo, email or a plethora of other ways.
Please be aware that your church must be compliant with CCLI to re-broadcast music online including songs from Rejoice.
For a more interactive approach, more suited to Bible studies, meeting software like Zoom, Skype or Jitsi (free) may be more useful. Zoom and Skype have low cost plans for small groups, larger groups who want to meet for longer periods will need to sign up for a paid plan.
If you are having a Bible study online using meeting software please take note of these tips:
- Online meetings need someone to lead, who is aware of who has spoken and who needs to speak
- Look at the camera, not the screen, so that you make eye contact with the other participants
- Establish a clear protocol of how to signal that you wish to say something, different software has different ways of doing this
- Have Google chat or Facebook group chat open at the same time so that if there are technical difficulties you can still communicate with each other.
4. Commission of Assembly
We will provide more information concerning the Commission of Assembly, scheduled for Tuesday 5th May 2020, as it becomes available.