Norfolk

Aylsham churchgoers use app to rate hymns

Congregation at Aylsham Parish Church Image copyright Mentimeter
Image caption Worshippers at Aylsham Parish Church in Norfolk are using a smartphone app to interact with sermons

Churchgoers in a village parish have been given the chance to rate hymns using their smartphones.

Worshippers in Aylsham, Norfolk, are being asked to use a live-voting app during services to give feedback on each Sunday's selected songs of praise.

They can also answer questions on a projector screen and add to a "word cloud" of things the congregation is praying for.

The church vicar said he hoped it would make services "much more interactive".

Reverend Canon Andrew Beane said he had trialled the app - developed by Swedish company Mentimeter - in three services to date.

Image copyright Mentimeter
Image caption The app can be used to ask questions of the church's congregation, with their responses displayed on a projector screen in a "word cloud"

"I would like to think it's pioneering," said Reverend Beane. "We're holding on to the traditional but embracing new technology to make it more relevant to society today.

"Sometimes you can ask a question and people are shy, but by using the app, everybody joins in."

The reverend said use of the app had not brought extra people into the church, but had encouraged greater interaction between older and younger members of the congregation.

The church already offers free internet access through a Norfolk-based scheme called WiSpire, and has a presence on social media platforms.

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