The International Community of Mennonite Brethren (ICOMB) is made up of 21 national churches in 19 countries with approximately 450,000 members. ICOMB exists to facilitate relationships and ministries to enhance the witness and discipleship of its member national churches – connecting, strengthening and expanding.
Circumstances changed here in Germany during the last weeks of the COVID19 crises: In health, socially, relationally and economically. In times where people cannot go shopping, go to the restaurants and other places to have fun, things have become different, but also priorities have changed. I experience and observe that people are more open to talking with each other: face to face, across the street and yards, but especially through social media.
Many churches went online with their services and got three or four times more visitors than before. People are open to chat on different subjects of life and about the meaning of life through social media. They are part of livestreams and many different virtual tools in order to interact with one another.
On 8 April 2020, a house of prayer in Germany started a 90-minute live prayer time on the internet with TV and radio stations involved. Even politicians took part, like the prime minister of Bavaria. According to estimates there were up to one million Germans praying at that time.
I send devotions via text messages a few times week to the phones of more than a hundred people. They sometimes forward them to others with the help of social media.
Here are some thoughts I made during the last weeks. May it help you:
- What are we writing to people?
- How do we communicate with others?
- Are we willing to use all means to spread the gospel even to strangers in different parts of the world?
May God bless you
—Andreas Isaak, ICOMB secretary and leader from Verband Mennonitischer Brüdergemeinden in Bayern (VMBB), ICOMB Update