A Letter from Cynde A. Bimbi, Director of Communications & Public Relations
[this letter was first sent to all Rectors in the Episcopal Church in Delaware on March 17, 2020]
Wednesday, March 18
It is said that communications move at a constant, quick pace, but today it feels more like a 33 vinyl record has been set to 78. I expect each of you are feeling the same, as you are planning and looking for new ways to communicate with your congregation. I am sure your parishioners are looking forward to hearing from you and also finding that new, temporary normal. I hope to hear from you and learn what the normal will be in your parish, so we can share your good ideas with each other. Check-out some recommendations and ideas further down this email.
Please know that the communications team at the Mission Support Office is here to help you in any way we are able. We have restructured our daily tasks and routine so I can be more available to help you with any communication concerns, questions, or direction, if needed. I have talked to several of you already and am so pleased you called.
Below are a few how-to’s, links, and recommendations that I would like to share and hope will be helpful:
- Streaming services and messages using Facebook Live
- #1 thing to know and share: You do not need to have an account to view a Facebook Live video. I have created a guide on how to link to a Facebook Live link if you do not have an account — here.
- Facebook Live is simple to use and a very good live streaming platform. All you need is a mobile phone, tripod, and somebody to tap on start and finish. I have provided a link for the instructions below.
- You will want to use your church’s Facebook page. If you do not have one, you can sign up in 7 easy steps — learn how here.
- I do not recommend ‘scheduling’ a Facebook Live session unless you are well versed with how that function works and have tested it within the privacy settings within Facebook. Scheduling is not necessary.
- You can promote your Facebook Live video by simply using your Facebook page link and sending that link to your parishioners and placing it on your website.
- Finally, here are 4 easy steps on how to do Facebook Live from your parish.
- Don’t be afraid to use this platform — it works well.
- Video conferencing using Zoom
- Zoom is a good platform for meetings, book study, etc.
- You can set-up a free Zoom account (45-minute limit) here or check the availability of the diocesan Zoom account. If you plan to use Zoom, we recommend at this time that you try the free account. Having your own account will allow you the most flexibility when scheduling. If you need more than 45 minutes, you can disconnect and redial back into the meeting. If you
would like to check the availability of the diocesan Zoom account, please call Pam at the Mission Support Office.
- You do not need a Zoom account to join a call.
- You can join a Zoom meeting from a phone, computer, or device.
- Social Media – Facebook
- Most churches in our diocese have a Facebook page. This is a good time to utilize this platform as it is a simple way to keep people connected to one another and to you. If you are not familiar with Facebook please keep in mind that it is ‘public’ and many, many people could have the opportunity to see your conversations or live feed videos.
- Encourage those who have personal Facebook accounts to ‘follow’ your page, as well as the diocesan page, so your messages (remember they are public) land in their personal feed.
- If you do not have a Facebook page for your parish and would like to have one, you can sign up in 7 easy steps — learn how here.
- Again, it is not necessary to have a Facebook account to link to a Facebook Live video.
- Instagram and Snapchat are also good social media platforms, but not as familiar for many.
Again, I look forward to knowing what you all are doing so we can share your good and creative ideas with everyone. If you have tried something that didn’t work so well, I would like to hear that too.
Please, please, please do not hesitate to reach out to me. You can email or reach me on my cell phone, 302.345.9392. The time that I will be spending in the office will be limited for the next few weeks, but I will be available by both email and cell phone. I am also happy to come to you and assist with setting up any new communications if that is necessary.
Many thanks and blessings during these uncommon, extraordinary times.