Baptist Churches Celebrate Competition Win

Tech-savvy churches across the country are celebrating receiving a £500 donation from Baptist Insurance, with the national winner taking home £1,500.

In April the specialist insurer invited Baptist places of worship to submit their Tales of Technology – stories showcasing how they have been using technology to benefit their mission, congregation and their community.

Entries were submitted from across the country, with churches sharing how they had moved services and meetings online, installed automated heating systems to reduce costs and even embraced the world of TikTok.

Judges had the unenviable task of selecting regional winners from the wonderful and inspirational stories with 13 regional winners selected from across the UK and each receiving a £500 donation.

Derby Urban Church was named winner of the East Midlands region before being selected as overall national winner after impressing judges with their story of how they embraced technology to support their local community. On top of their regional win of £500 they received a further £1,000 – bringing their total winnings to £1,500.

The city centre church is based in an area of deprivation and has a congregation made up of a diverse mix of people many of whom were coming out of homelessness, addiction, debt and poverty.

As with many churches during lockdown Derby Urban Church started broadcasting online. This left those without internet access or the digital skills to view services excluded, something the church set about remedying by buying digital picture frames and sharing them with members of the congregation that needed them.

The frames carried several hours of material including images, church activities, artwork created during lockdown and four recorded church services. Every few weeks a member of the church visited to replace the USB with an updated version with new services, helping to keep the community connected during a difficult time.

Chandra Morbey, church secretary at Derby Urban Church, said: “It was a wonderful surprise to win and we’re very grateful to Baptist Insurance for the donation.

“We’re a very diverse church and we serve many vulnerable people who are excluded digitally. We were wondering how to overcome that issue, and the solution we came up with was to buy and give out digital picture frames with USB sticks loaded with our services, worship songs, and photos.

“The feedback we got back was amazing – the recipients were so delighted to be able to join in with worship, and really touched that we’d made the effort.”

The church plans to use the funds to improve its livestreaming capabilities to help it reach even more people.

David Lane, chief executive at Baptist Insurance, said: “I’d like to congratulate all of our winners of the Tales of Technology competition, each of whom will receive vital funds to support their work.

“We heard some amazing stories about how churches progressed their mission and benefitted the local community using technology.

“Derby Urban Church’s entry absolutely summed up the impact that technology has had in providing for its local community and I am delighted to announce them as worthy winners of the national prize.”

For a full list of the winners and to learn more about their work, visit www.baptist-insurance.co.uk/churchcomp.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *