‘A new church congregation’: Middle Kentucky Adventist Fellowship continues to create an online community

As COVID-19 closed in-person church services in 2020, pastors from Middle Kentucky wanted to find a way for their church members to remain connected. Joining efforts, they created the Middle Kentucky Adventist Fellowship – a group dedicated to bringing spiritual encouragement and community. More than a year later, the group remains active and recently held its first-ever in-person event.

The idea of the group came from Jon Remitera, pastor at Danville, Somerset and Grove churches in Kentucky. Remitera, who was new in the area, wanted to start a daily devotional series that would be live streamed on Facebook. After speaking with Pastor Tom Kyser and Pastor Daniel McFeeters, the group created the Middle Kentucky Adventist Fellowship Facebook group, which published 15-minute-long devotional thoughts.

“That provided a space for our church members, in the midst of the pandemic, to find community,” Remitera said. “I’ve personally drawn closer with a lot of my fellow pastors in my area, and other members of their churches that I otherwise would not have met had it not been for the [Middle Kentucky Adventist Fellowship].”

After a few weeks, Pastors Mykal Ringstaff, Kevin Shearer and Christopher Langston also joined the fellowship. The six pastors would take turns to share devotionals. Eventually, they started live-streaming weekly Vespers services as well, which received about 50 unique views per video.

“I think the most exciting part of this program was actually just seeing our church members forming, if you will, a new church congregation,” McFeeters said. “[Church members] were seeing themselves as part of something bigger than just one local church and seeing the church as more than just a place we go on Sabbath morning.”

Through the year, the Middle Kentucky Adventist Fellowship also held a revival series. The devotional, sermons and revival series were all programs conducted online. But on August 29, Somerset church hosted a Chili and Cornbread Festival – the first in-person event of the Middle Kentucky Adventist Fellowship.

The festival was well attended with more than 75 guests, many of whom were not part of the Adventist Church. Remitera says the Middle Kentucky Adventist Fellowship will continue to plan events to connect churches and serve its surrounding community.

“We’re better together,” Remitera said.  “So often, we do ministry in isolation, and even in competition with one another. … So, we’re trying to break from that mold because collectively we can do so much more.”

To see the work of the Middle Kentucky Adventist Fellowship look up @MidKAF on Facebook.