With YDS and the entire Yale campus closed for public gatherings, the experience that seminarians miss most, of course, is community worship. Social media, however, can gather community even when we are practicing social distancing, and each day Berkeley students can be found virtually together at morning prayer, courtesy of Zoom. A pair of worship team leaders conduct the service live, with dozens of attendees following along, most visible to each other. Some have a glorious case of bed head and some discreetly sip coffee, but the gathering is a worshipful and joyous expression of community. During post-worship announcements, students share the latest news and celebrate each other’s company. An all-microphones-unmuted singing of “Happy Birthday” lends new meaning to “make a joyful noise.”
YDS’ Marquand worship services are also still very actively “on” every day, with sermons, prayers, and musical contributions from remote locations artfully rendered into one seamless YouTube video. On Thursday, March 26, the Marquand worship service was an all-Berkeley production (find link here to view service). We hope it brings to each member of our broader Berkeley community the same peace and comfort it has brought our YDS community.