By Rev. Melissa Fain, Fig Tree Christian Church
Most congregations have some kind of online presence. It might be a website, a Facebook page, or a Twitter handle. Some might post their sermons on YouTube, while others might have a minister who blogs. For Fig Tree Christian, it’s all online. Everything is made for an online audience. The sermons are intentionally in blog form for easy access. There is a place to submit prayers, or pray for others. About twice a year there is a bible study. All this work is done to reach a demographic who calls themselves “nones.” These people are still eager to learn about the bible, but for whatever reason, they do not feel comfortable in a physical church. These people are very tech savvy. They have smart phones and tablets loaded with apps.
For the first time since the launch two years ago, Fig Tree Christian will have an Advent Devotional App. It’s an exciting project created from a query that kept coming up online: Where are all the female voices? The app has been created as an answer. There are many female Christian voices out there; they just are not being highlighted enough. The app, titled From Her Voice, highlights 9 female voices, each from their own unique context. They are all different ages, not all are Disciple, and not all are ministers. Even the ministers within the group have different pastoral contexts. It’s amazing how their devotions come together to create this beautiful menagerie of words. From Her Voice daily takes different aspects of the nativity and brings new life to the story. This project, in all its forms, can be found on Upcoming Events on Fig Tree Christian.
In a physical church a group could purchase a bible study or devotional. In an online setting, everything must be created from scratch. All of the bible studies have been personally researched and written. All the images used on the website are designed in Photoshop. Music has to either be in public domain or written for the site.