Christ is the Answer Ministry (CITAM) – formerly Nairobi Pentecostal Church – has launched services on YouTube and its website to draw Generation Z into its congregation, as an age group that now makes up 46 % of the country’s population, but which is not attending church.
The new CITAM church online service is already reaching over 1,200 YouTube subscribers, with 157 motivational and biblical videos posted by CITAM’s bishop, pastors, reverends, and guest speakers that have achieved over 70,205 views in under 3 months – thanks to the church’s new MPLS-based Wide Area Network, installed by Liquid Telecom Kenya to interlink CITAM’s 19 branches.
The new network has connected the church’s branches at 10Mbps and its headquarters at a 100Mbps, with just one church in Kapsabet, Nandi County connected with a high-speed wireless link.
A recent analysis by CITAM found that Kenya’s 20.3 million Generation-Z youth are barely attending church. But the generation is digitally native, with an around-the-clock video diet made up of streamed content, including vlogs on YouTube, across entertainment, news and self-teaching tips. David Oginde, CITAM’s Presiding Bishop said the move is also allowing the church to reach a new global audience.
“We have decided to take the Gospel creatively and intentionally into this space, which is the ‘in’ thing, the common thing, and the future thing for our target audience,” he said.
“This will enable CITAM to faithfully live out its vision with this generation, which comprises the pre-churched, un-churched and de-churched urban populace that has embraced massive digital migration. It will entail taking our Sunday and weekday services to the masses online,” said Oginde.
In addition to its digital launch, Liquid Telecom’s connectivity has enabled the church to set-up a Microsoft Dynamics application to handle its enterprise resource planning, which is accessible from all of its branches.
“We have invested in ICT to enhance CITAM’s efficiency in service delivery to our members,” said Rev. Elias Mwaura CITAM’s Director for Administration.
The Liquid Telecom Kenya system is also now powering a new E-board platform for CITAM, which is an application that manages board papers, minutes, decision papers, agendas, and a voting module. The system is now being used by CITAM’s council of elders and senior pastors to achieve smooth boards meetings and performance evaluations.
Other sections of the church benefiting from the new high-speed Internet include Hope Media, CITAM Schools – which will now benefit from digital learning and connected computer labs – and CITAM’s Kadolta Resort in Keserian, Kajiado County.
“We are progressively implementing the 2016 – 2025 CITAM strategic plan that is anchored on building capacity for growth, impact and sustainability in communities, while upholding the integrity, accountability and flexibility of our services,” said Rev. Mwaura.
Liquid Telecom’s connection will also see CITAM’s media section, Hope Media, broaden its reach and programming capacity, especially in digital broadcasting.
“The rapid growth and development of technology, especially (ICT), is having a major impact globally across every sector, including churches. As the country’s leading ISP, Liquid Telecom is committed to offering high-speed Internet solutions to help every organisation realise its growth and maximum potential,” said Adil El Youssefi, CEO,
Liquid Telecom Kenya.