This is a time when many of us are longing for deeper connections. Amidst the disruptions and challenges of this pandemic, it is easy to be isolated, exhausted, and unsure how to proceed in our leadership and in the lives of our churches.

We see many practices of church life and society breaking down, but we are not sure what new future is emerging. In a time of polarity, loneliness, social distancing, and doubt, we yearn for meaningful relationships with neighbors.

How might God be inviting us into deeper connections during this disruptive time?

As followers of Christ, we are a people who adapt, who grow, and who ultimately are transformed by God’s grace. More often than not, this happens in and through our relationships with others.


Small church Zoom communities are connecting every day to learn about the needs, the struggles and the hopes of the people in the church and in the neighborhood. As we dig deep into God’s word and share our experiences, we begin to envision the bright spots of God’s work in this changing context.


In the Weekly Response to COVID19, contained in the ABCOTS website, Dr. Marvin McMickle shared with leaders, in the zoom call of August 25, the ABHMS “Contextualized Ministry Project,” and how focusing on the dynamic interrelationships between pastor, congregation and neighborhood can transform our culture. Using the Ephesian 4: 11-13 as a model, Dr. McMickle provides dynamic biblical insight for reframing our interconnections.


Link to ABCOTS Weekly Response to COVID19 and related pdf:


Dr. Marvin McMickle is a frequent Judson Press author, Pastor Emeritus of Antioch Baptist Church in Cleveland, Ohio, and he recently retired as President of Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School in Rochester, NY. He holds an M. Div. from Union Theological Seminary in NYC, a D. Min. from Princeton Theological Seminary and a Ph. D. from Case Western Reserve University.