Local churches adapt to COVID-19 outbreak by offering online and drive-thru services

Posted at 12:19 AM, Apr 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-01 03:23:01-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Similar to how many people are now working at home, local churches are also connecting to their members online from YouTube to Facebook.

Dr. V.K. Jones, the pastor of The People's Missionary Baptist Church said the greatest loss throughout this process has been the inability to gather together.

"If we don't break this cycle, we're going to see people that we care about that are going to be negatively affected," said Jones. "This is one of the places where there's the most contact, in churches generally, there's a lot of hugging, handshaking, a lot of physical contact."

To prevent the spread of COVID-19 other local churches are also incorporating online technology to connect.

Iglesia de Dios Pentecostal Church in Southwest Bakersfield is offering services online as well as in their parking lot. The services allow the congregation to drive up and listen to the church service on the radio.

"Once we, took the decision we were going to stop all of the church services in the church building. We start mainly at home, and we'll do some online service. The new ideas starting coming to us, and that kind of motivated us and one of the ideas was to do a drive-in drive in prayer service," said Harry Marroquin, the pastor of Iglesia de Dios Pentecostal Church.

Jerrickson Ajex, the pastor of the Bakersfield English Church said he has been able to reach more people with connecting with his congregation on Zoom.

"I know it's a lot of inconvenience to a lot of families with children and businesses, but to take this precaution is essential for the well being of one another, the country and the world," said Ajex.

However, the virtual worship services have provided the opportunity for the leadership of local churches to reflect.

"The church is actually not the church building, the church, Jesus says is each of us. We're the church of Christ so the church is the individual person," said Marroquin.

If you know of a church that is finding new ways to worship and reach the community, send us an email at