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Join me! Live Church Online Events in England & Ireland Church Online events in England & Ireland June 2013 Church Online events in England & Ireland June 2013

Willow Creek UK & Ireland is partnering with for a special regional event. As’s Church Online Community Pastor, I am honored to share about the global reach of Church Online and how a partnership might play a part in local church mission in the UK. 

Come and join with other leaders in your region and explore the opportunities that a partnership with Church Online presents. You will be inspired by what you hear!

June 3 Stafford, England
June 4 Scunthorpe, England
June 5 London, England (SW11 1EJ)
June 6 Bracknell, England
June 7 Bangor, N. Ireland

For more specific details on the events in June, check out

What is Church Online?

As long as there is even one soul hurting, Church Online will be a place to encounter God and people who care through:

Global Reach. Church Online reaches people who live in countries without the freedom to worship Christ, people who don’t live near a campus, military families stationed abroad, those searching for answers online, and millions more. In 2012, 4.8 million unique visitors in more than 220 countries and territories attended Church Online at

Shared Experience. There are more than 50 experience times at Church Online that share worship, a community pastor, and a powerful message delivered by Pastor Craig Groeschel just like at a location.

Real Community. Church Online at is a community of people all over the world experiencing God and connecting with one another like never before in history. People from all walks of life experience church together in real-time including live chat and one-on-one prayer with a passionate volunteer.

Changed Lives. You can change the life of someone you know who lives far from a your physical location or isn’t quite ready to walk through the doors. Invite someone you know to attend a Church Online at service at

Join the Team. By accepting people where they are with love, incredible life change happens every week. That’s only possible because of the hundreds of volunteers with a passion to serve. This is your chance to be a global missionary in a digital world. Details at

Can A Commercial Change Your Life?

(Please refresh your screen if you’re unable to see this video.)

No matter what you believe, I’m personally inviting you to watch some thought-provoking commercials with us at Church Online. This commercial series is available to watch 51 different times tonight through next Saturday morning, February 9. We’ll be exploring how simple commercials can change the way we see things and how we act. Feel free to hang out in the chat room with the community or double click the video for a full-screen experience.

Social Media Church Interview

I had the privilege recently to be interviewed by DJ Chuang on the Social Media Church podcast. If you’re interested to learn more of our family’s story and about my dream job, check it out!

The Minimalist Life: Beyond the To Do List Podcast Interview

Beyond the To Do List

Click to go to podcast interview on the Minimalist Life.

Who wouldn’t enjoy a minimalist podcast? Erik Fisher has a great productivity podcast I listen to regularly, and it was an honor to be interviewed for it recently on the topic of the minimalist life. Some key points Erik and I discuss are:

  • What is minimalism?
  • Finding the things that matter most in your life, and investing in them.
  • Self awareness of over stepping bounds, or not doing enough.
  • Opportunity cost
  • Margin
  • Obligations vs. Commitments
  • More is done in community

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW HERE…and let me know your thoughts.  Did you learn anything? Is there something you’d like to discuss? What would you ask on a follow-up minimalist podcast episode? Post your responses in the comments below.

Want more help? I encourage you to subscribe to Erik’s productivity podcast and check out the links on Erik’s notes page for additional posts and photos on the minimalist life.

Dana Byers and her family are passionate about adoption and online ministry, and they sold all they owned in 2007 to live a mobile lifestyle overseas and expand online ministry practices globally.  She’s the author of “The Art of Online Ministry” and recently moved to Oklahoma to become the Community Pastor for Church Online. All opinions shared here are expressly her own.


We’re Moving to Oklahoma!

Chris and I love The Church.  We have made life-long friends, developed spiritually, and matured as leaders thanks much in part to the global church community we’re part of.  More than 10 years ago we walked across the street from our home in Edmond, Oklahoma to visit  We saw Craig Groeschel preach a powerful, biblical message, and we saw people commit their lives to Christ right there on the spot.  Our lives have never been the same.

Our involvement in infected us with a passion to share the Gospel.  Over the years our passion grew to include relational evangelism, Church Online, global missions, and church planting.  Craig told us we’re ministers, and our heart connection to the ministry of led us to help them launch their first out-of-state church, lead small groups, and become deeply involved in the ministry of Church Online.  Chris and I eventually formed a non-profit organization,, to fund and equip churches in non-English speaking countries to launch online churches.  Since last Fall, my personal interest in seeing online churches become primary resources for forming local communities globally has increased, but I wasn’t sure how to act on this interest until recently.  (You can read more about this dream here.)

I am deeply moved to share with you that I get to be on staff and serve the very church in which I’ve grown up in this past decade.  I’ll begin serving as Community Pastor for Church Online at in July among some of the brightest and most generous people I know in the world.  We are moving back to Oklahoma, but Chris will remain CEO of Formstack and travel back to Indiana regularly.  Our family is making a quick move, and we’d greatly appreciate your prayers as we go through this transition.

To our Indiana friends and family…we are grateful for the face to face time we’ve had here with you.  These past 2 years have been precious to Chris, Blake, Mackenzie, and me.  I want to make a personal thank you to the AMAZING (they seriously rock) Formstack team who are being very flexible to make this happen, and an especially grand THANK YOU to Chris who prays for, invests in, and supports me like no other.

And yes…since we’re in the midst of moving you can expect a series of blog posts starting next week on how a minimalist moves house in less than 3 weeks!


PS – This is the 4th time I’ve moved to Oklahoma in 11 years.  It’s one of America’s best kept secrets.  ;)

Church Online Goal: Reach Moms

This week I came across a fascinating infographic by Nielsen about “The Digital Lives of American Moms”.  (See the entire infographic here.)








Immediately I began thinking about how in the church world we discuss the value of getting husbands and dads into church so the rest of the family follows.  That’s still an important focus, but the data on this infographic supports targeting moms to get a family connected to God and the church.

How can your online outreach appeal to moms?



Do Church Online Attendees Need Local Community?

Yes.  But not for the legalistic reasons many of us are tempted to cite. It’s not likely that I’ll meet all my lovely online friends face to face this side of heaven, but it is important for us to provide the example of localizing church online (by having meet ups, hosting discussion groups at a coffee shop, or planting a home church, to name a few ideas).

The fact is, when anyone is confronted with the love of Jesus Christ, he cannot help but share it with those in his immediate, local life.  Shortly after becoming Christ followers, we realize we carry hope and it’s ours to share with the world around us.

No matter where a person first experiences Christ – online or offline – she can’t sit still too long.  She is compelled by the Holy Spirit in her to close the laptop and hit the streets to minister with the rest of the Church.

This is why those of us who are online ministers need to continually encourage attendees to invite neighbors, cousins, and co-workers to church online. It can be as simple as sharing a link and then discussing it over coffee.

Leading church online attendees to make a local impact spreads the hope we’re sharing with them every week. It will multiply our reach!

What are some ways you’ve seen people take the online offline?


Church Online Collaboration

Recently two churches in my city (both of which I had the pleasure of being part of during their early years) joined forces and decided to operate as one. They’ve pooled resources to make a greater impact in our city. I love this approach!

Are there ways existing online churches can link arms to make a greater impact globally?

Which of you who don’t have online churches can give volunteer manpower to the existing ones?


Church Online: One Size Doesn’t Fit All

Receiving emails from partners in non-English speaking countries always makes my day. The latest update from the Czech Republic is no exception. Pastor Michal and Jiri are passionate about sharing God’s love with people in their country, which is one of the most – if not the most – atheistic countries in all of Europe.

I’m often asked how to improve Facebook ad outcomes, whether online experience time lengths need to change, and how to better engage people in a church online chat room. I make suggestions to every team who contacts me, and yet one principle remains true despite an increasing number of online churches popping up all over the globe: One Size Does NOT Fit All.

Church online attendees in Poland might prefer live prayer to participating in a chat room, and the Slovak attendees are used to seeing messages from a variety of pastors. In America some churches provide a more relaxed online experience and others have more concrete processes. This is not a problem unless we fail to take time to assess our approaches or if we are not doing all we can to be most effective at connecting with the specific audience we believe God is working through us to minister to.

My friends in the Czech Republic provide a creative example of trying different approaches. They’ve produced short videos explaining online church and letting people who speak their language gain a more personal view of church as a whole. This is a great idea and I believe it will work well for them. Here’s one of their videos:

Don’t be afraid to make your own path to get to the people you want to reach.


What I Belive is Next for Online Churches (3 of 3)

Today I want church online leaders and volunteers to discuss what could be the most important question for us at this point in time. I’m in prayer and discussion with other church online leaders to seek good solutions regarding this opportunity at hand.

There are pockets of people who are in close proximity to each other choosing to gather and attend church online in homes, share meals, and have informal small group discussions around messages. This is how our family operated when we lived in Europe, and it was one of the best community and church experiences I had.

Years ago Craig Groeschel told me I’m a minister.  I believed him, and my perspective on life has never been the same.  Your church online attendees are waiting to hear they are ministers.  They must know they have permission to use the creative ideas God gives them to change the world.  They need to know that it’s encouraged to invite people over to attend church online with them and discuss the message afterwards.  They need to hear that churches can be planted in their local city using the experiences you’re providing every week.  Church online attendees need to see examples of people scheduling local coffee meetups in our chat rooms regularly.  We must be casting the vision every week in our online experiences and on our Facebook pages to use church online as a means of local outreach. Your attendees will grow (and give) exponentially more if they’re involved.

After reading today’s question, feel free to reply here, on my Facebook page, or via Twitter.

3) We need church online attendees to take up the cause of reaching out locally using the online ministry resources we’re providing. How can we share the vision of church planting potential with our online attendees?

I believe our response and approach to this opportunity is a key element of the future success of online church, and I’m dreaming of the day church online attendees plant thousands upon thousands of churches worldwide.



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