As COVID surges, some S.C. churches returning to online-only services

As COVID-19 cases continue to rise daily across South Carolina, several churches in harder-hit communities have decided to pause or backtrack on their reopening plans, returning to drive-in and online-only services. A recent study examining Americans’ responses to COVID-19 shows that a majority (64 percent) are “somewhat uncomfortable” or “very uncomfortable” taking a seat in […]

Iva’s Union Church makes history with baptism

Union Baptist Church of Iva is a rural church in Anderson County. Like most churches, it was following guidelines during the pandemic and not gathering together in its buildings. When the church met for its first regular worship service since the COVID-19 crisis, a history-making baptism highlighted the worship service. Jamilius Freeman, discharged from the […]

Mask-makers finding joy, ministry in helping others stay safe

For years, Jean Talbot, a member of Mountain Springs Baptist Church in Piedmont, has been making pillows for people who are recovering from illnesses or surgeries. But now she’s using her sewing skills to make face masks for others. About 13 years ago, Talbot was diagnosed with breast cancer. After her surgery, she couldn’t find […]

Charleston churches collaborating to bring alternative VBS to kids’ homes

With social-distancing restrictions still being implemented as COVID-19 lingers into the summer months, churches are having to explore options for holding Vacation Bible Schools. Several Charleston children’s ministers have found a unique alternative. They’re collaborating in creating a virtual VBS experience for families. “In children’s ministry, as in all ministries, we’re trying to strategically plan […]

Regathering of the Church Occurring Cautiously, Carefully

For Pastor Hank Williams and the congregation of First Baptist Church, Boiling Springs, the strategy for a safe regathering was captured in a slogan for social distancing: “From the street to the seat.” The church began regathering on May 17 with four services: two at 9:30 and two at 11:00, in two different locations on […]

Coronavirus Impacting Worship, Giving, Technology Use in S.C. Churches

The coronavirus outbreak has had some profound effects on Baptist churches across the state, according to an online study of pastors conducted by The Baptist Courier in May. The Courier asked South Carolina Baptist pastors how the pandemic has impacted their congregations and what their plans are for the near future. As churches moved away […]

12 Questions Churches Must Answer Once People Regather

Recently, we all received good news: The country is going to slowly reopen, and that includes houses of worship. But if you think we’ll all rush back to church and pick up where we left off, don’t kid yourself — it’s not going to happen. Or at least it shouldn’t happen. We need to think […]

As churches begin to reopen, steps to consider before you gather

While the vast majority of churches quickly closed their doors through March, April and early May, the startup for churches may be a bit slower. State-mandated guidelines and local orders will determine many churches’ start dates. Some churches have already begun meeting; others have shared plans, while more have announced they are studying the issue. […]

Baptist church launches national virtual Easter egg hunt

Simply by playing video games with his children, Curtis James came up with a ministry idea that went nationwide. The virtual Easter egg hunt, hosted on a Minecraft server on Easter Sunday, April 12, stemmed from the desire of Tate Springs Baptist Church in Texas to engage entire families, both adults and children, even as […]

SCBC offers avenue for churches to continue serving

The effects of COVID-19 have heightened the need for South Carolina Baptist churches to come together, to both share and serve the needs of their communities. The “COVID-19 Serve Community Aid” has been established to make $250,000 available to aid churches in meeting the specific needs of their communities. “Our purpose statement is clear: ‘We […]