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Embracing Pastoral Entrepreneurship during the Pandemic: Traits needed to be an Effective Digital...

The Network for New Media, Religion and Digital Culture Studies and the Tech in Churches During COVID-19 project announces their second Tech Trend Paper, entitled Embracing Pastoral Entrepreneurship during the Pandemic: Traits needed to be an Effective Digital Pastor. This paper identifies and discusses five key traits pastors found essential to running a successful online ministry. It also examines how pastors implemented these changes.


Tech Trend papers provide a concise but in-depth analysis of important themes raised in the Tech in Churches During COVID-19 research project, a study funded by the Lilly Endowment which investigates how churches have adopted and adapted to technology during the global pandemic. This Tech Trend paper draws conclusions from the analysis of 50 Tech Talk sessions with 478 congregational leaders from Indiana, hosted by the Center for Congregations in 2020 and 2021. This specific research considers the tech challenges and problem-solving strategies church leaders employed when implementing digital media. Specifically, the report analyzes how the churches engaged with technology and the difficulties encountered during the pandemic.


The primary goal of the Tech in Churches During COVID-19 research project is to explore and analyze the evolving relationship between technology and religious congregations during a pandemic that is still impacting churches in many parts of the world. This study analyzes data from the Center for Congregations in Indianapolis, Indiana, collected through their “Connect Through Tech” grant program. These grants supported more than 2700 congregations across the state of Indiana during the pandemic, enabling them to purchase digital equipment and other technological resources to facilitate their transition from traditional offline to digital worship services and ministries during times of social distancing and lockdowns.


Embracing Pastoral Entrepreneurship during the Pandemic: Traits needed to be an Effective Digital Pastor is available online, at: https://doi.org/10.21423/digitalpastortraits


For more information about the Tech in Churches During COVID-19 project see: https://www.techinchurches.org/


Heidi A Campbell is available for interviews related to this report and her research on churches, technology, and digital culture. She can be contacted via email at heidic@tamu.edu or through the project’s Senior Researcher, sophie.osteen@tamu.edu.

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