All of this was … in a word? Unprecedented.
The speed and mastery with which MOPS leaders made this shift was astounding – but it shouldn’t have been. Women have organized, gathered and helped hold together the church’s patchwork of community for centuries, especially during crisis. Now is no exception.
Here’s the thing about the church, though. The church has plenty endured unprecedented circumstances in its 2,000 year history. This is because it is the people who make up a church, not the building, not the financial statement, not even the basic freedom to meet. Unprecedented moments in history have a way of revealing unshakeable truths. Here’s one: Pandemic or prosperity, an institution will always rise to the level of its volunteers. As an organization, we couldn’t be more proud of ours.
So we decided to follow the lead of our MOPS leaders for pivoting during a crisis, leaning in to the unknown, and trusting God with the rest. Here is what that looked like for MOPS International HQ:
As an organization, we began hosting a weekly MOPS gathering on Facebook Live in April and May. The turnout was outrageous, with around 50,000 moms tuning in each week. (You can view those here: April 7, April 14, April 21, April 28, May 5, May 12.)
In the middle of April, we sent a print magazine to our members. It’s called, The MOPS Magazine, and we sent it to over 80,000 moms who were stuck at home, plus a special edition for MOPS leaders with training resources. This quarterly magazine hit mailboxes right when moms needed it most, and addressed exactly what they were feeling.
April 1, we launched our annual theme and theme video. This is the concept we rally around as a community, where we set the intention for the year ahead. This year, we addressed COVID-19 head-on, with 135,000 views later, we believe it struck a chord.
Starting in April, we began monthly webinars to train our MOPS leaders. The focus: leading through uncertainty and cultivating community when it looks entirely different. The topics are timely, and the responses are overwhelmingly positive.
Since the end of March, we’ve been on a mission to get on the news with good news. TV and radio stations are pointing moms to MOPS around the country because we are knocking on local media’s doors, and they find our resources worth sharing.
Even though meeting in person is still not yet possible, our doors are wide open; our labor is on mission; and our God is not surprised, even in the unprecedented.