Dave Stone

Former Southeast Senior Pastor Dave Stone shared a message from the Blankenbaker Campus that was broadcast online.

This past Sunday, former Southeast Christian Church Senior Pastor Dave Stone preached to 8,000 empty seats at Southeast’s Blankenbaker Campus.

But his message did not go unheard.

Though measures taken to curb the spread of the coronavirus have limited large in-person gatherings, thousands heard Stone’s message titled “Conflict & Confusion,” part two of the “Reverse the Curse” series, while watching Southeast’s live stream worship services through YouTube, Facebook and www.southeastchristian.org.

Southeast’s leadership made the decision that until further notice, we are one church in thousands of locations, connected together online.

Some watched services in pajamas. Others gathered in their living room with friends and neighbors. They sang along with Southeast’s worship team. They studied the Word. They prayed.

“Our peace isn’t in a place that we go or a pill that we take or a possession that we own. Our peace is in the person of Jesus,” Stone said. “I don’t know how long we will be worshiping like this, but rather than binge-watching TV shows or turning inward, this is the perfect opportunity to deepen spiritually and to turn outward—to love, to help neighbors, to invite them to your home to worship with you.”

Live services air at 9:15 and 11:30 a.m. and 2 and 8 p.m. A replay of the service also may be viewed on YouTube. During live services, Southeast has chat hosts and online pastors available to talk and pray with viewers in real time.

Debra Farmer viewed the service on YouTube and enjoyed Stone’s message and the worship music.

“I was definitely disappointed we weren’t going to our church building, but church is found everywhere because Jesus is everywhere,” Farmer commented on YouTube.

Southeast launched its live stream service last year and an online community of worshipers has grown steadily.

Brenda Lykins, who normally attends Southeast’s River Valley Campus, watched the live stream via Facebook for the first time this past Sunday.

“I was so impressed with how it all ran,” Lykins commented on Facebook. “I was so glad that this is available for our church family to still feel connected, sing the worship songs and listen to the sermons.”

On-campus weekday gatherings at Southeast’s campuses have been canceled, but small groups will continue to meet in homes, and campus pastors will host online family gatherings Wednesdays at 7 p.m. through Facebook. For information, visit your campus-specific Facebook page.

Southeast’s ministries also are creating strategies to keep people connected through online meetups.

The decision to meet exclusively online was not taken lightly.

“Our decisions are not made out of fear in any way; rather, they are motivated by how we can best love our neighbors by preventing the spread of the virus unnecessarily,” said Southeast Senior Pastor Kyle Idleman and Executive Pastor Tim Hester in a statement that was emailed to church members. “And we believe this gives us the opportunity to spread the message of hope in Jesus Christ with our neighbors and those who are closest to us. We can’t wait to hear the stories about how God uses our online worship gatherings.”

Idleman will preach a sermon titled “Thorns and Thistles,” week three of the “Reverse the Curse” series, this Sunday.

Ways to love your neighbors during a crisis

PRAY for your neighbors.

CONNECT with your neighbors.

• Check on the elderly, widows, widowers and the disabled.

• Knock on the door and ask about needs, without physical contact.

• Write a note to each neighbor, include your phone number.

• Create or join Facebook page for your street, block, neighborhood or rural area.

• Go on a prayer walk.

SERVE your neighbors.

• A pharmacy run for the elderly may be helpful.

• Make a grocery run or donate excess food to neighbors who may need it.

• For families with young children, consider offering to watch their children.

• Do laundry for those that use services or can’t go to the laundromat.

• Contact your Southeast campus staff if a neighbor faces a financial need due to work stoppage or increased childcare cost.

How to watch Southeast Online

Joining a live experience online is an incredible way to stay connected to church when you can’t make it in person. There are several ways to watch, and it’s surprisingly easy to log on in just a matter of minutes.

What will I see?

The live stream experience is similar to if you went to a church building. You’ll see hosts welcoming you, worship, sermon and an application of the sermon to your life.

When can I watch?

We have live online experiences every Sunday at 9:15 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Where can I watch?

You can watch on YouTube Live, Facebook Live, or SoutheastChristian.org. It’s viewable on a computer, tablet or mobile device, as long as the device has Internet access.

How to watch on YouTube

1. Go to www.YouTube.com

2. Search for “Southeast Christian Church.”

3. Click on the Southeast Christian Church icon.

4. Click on the VIDEOS tab.

5. When the service time is near, you will see a post that says “Southeast Christian is live.”

6. Click on the picture and the live feed should start.

7. If you want to chat, you can put a comment in the thread.

How to watch on Facebook

1. Go to your personal Facebook account on the Facebook website or app.

2. Search for “Southeast Christian Church.”

3. Click on the Southeast Christian Church icon.

4. When the service time is near, you will see a post that that says Southeast Christian plans to go live.

5. Click on the picture and the live feed should start.

6. If you want to chat, you can put a comment in the thread.

How to watch on southeastchristian.org

1. Go to online.southeastchristian.org

2. When the service time starts, you’ll see a play button, just click play and the service will start.

3. If you want to chat, you can create a username on the right box and chat with a pastor online.

If you have any questions, please email SoutheastOnline@secc.org