Concerns about Zoom
Some of you have inquired about a problem that's been widely reported in the media: "Zoom Bombing," in which trouble-makers drop into a Zoom meeting uninvited for the purpose of disrupting the meeting. I met this week with some members of our worship team to assess the risk and benefits of using Zoom for online worship, consider alternatives, ask for outside guidance, and make a decision. For the time being, we intend to continue using Zoom, though we have sought and implemented security options that will limit, but not eliminate the risk of mischief. It is likely that we will make additional changes soon, but we believe that the accessibility and flexibility of the system outweighs the risk.
It is possible to participate in worship or other church meetings without using the Zoom app. We invite you to join a worship service by making a phone call or by watching a recording of the worship service on YouTube. To join by phone, place a phone call to (346)248-7799 and enter the meeting ID for the worship service. The meeting IDs for our worship services are published on the connect page of our website. To watch a recorded worship service, visit our recorded worship service list on YouTube, or watch on the connect page of our website. Worship service recordings are typically available on YouTube a few hours after the scheduled service time.
One risk that remains is that a person who intends to disrupt our meeting can find the links to our public worship, and enter the meeting as easily as you can. Once they get there, though, we believe there are reasonable measures in place to limit trouble. First, we've disabled the ability of anyone other than our online "director" to use the whiteboard or screen sharing functions of Zoom. Second, we have a person designated to monitor the service for anyone who attempts to disrupt it, and to break their connection and block their return.
We believe that we are an unlikely target for this disruptive behavior, and that the odds are low that anyone will try to interfere with our worship. If they do, here's what I'll ask of you: Please don't offer any comment or reaction. Comments and reaction only reward the intruder. Let our assigned technical volunteers handle the disconnection of the intruder, and let's go on without comment. Our worship is perfected in our love and care for each other and for the world, and God is not mocked by a petty mischief maker.