Video Conference Calls
Telephone calls and text messages are always options for most of you. Still, we believe that the most beneficial experience of community comes in a live conversation with a small group of people. Video conferencing tools allow you to do just that, and we've listed some below. All of these tools have pros and cons. Evaluate the options and find which one is best for your situation. 

A few notes before we begin:
  1. All of these "platforms" or services have free versions. With some, you can pay for an upgrade to include better features. 
  2. All of these options require the person starting the video chat to create an account.
  3. You can join a video conference without using video yourself, but you will need a video camera on your device for other people to be able to see you on the call. Most desktop computers don't have video cameras or microphones. Most tablets and smartphones have both a camera and a microphone.
  4. You can join one of these video conference calls from anywhere you have a device and internet service.

The tool that Hope's staff has been using to meet is called Zoom . Once you create an account with Zoom, you can set up a meeting and send an invitation email with a link. The person you're trying to connect with clicks that link to join.


  • Hope Church is using Zoom for our Wednesday night, mid-week live broadcasts, so you will need Zoom to join those.
  • Because of our use of Zoom on Wednesday nights, we are helping provide technical support to anyone who needs it (email
  • You can see video "boxes" or "tiles" with images of up to 49 devices at a time on one screen.
  • There is a free version.

  • The free version only allows 40-minute calls for groups of three or more. Your call will come to an end after 40 minutes, and you'll have to re-establish the call to continue.

Note:  There is a paid version available for $14.99/month that allows you to talk as long as you'd like. You can also break from a larger meeting into small groups on the same call.
Support: Click  here  to contact Zoom customer support.

Skype has been around for a while and is a reliable option for video conferencing. Their free plan has no time limit, but we recommend it for smaller groups (<10 people).


  • It's a free service.
  • No time limit on the call
  • Can have up to 50 people

  • In the video display, you can only see a couple of people on the screen at once. Small circles appear at the top of our screen with other images of people on the call. You have to click and drag their picture down onto the main screen to see them well. 

Support:  Click here to contact Skype customer support.
Uber Conference

Uber Conference is another option, similar to Zoom, with some differences.

  • Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, they are offering this service free. 
  • There is no time limit for meetings with up to 50 people.

  • We don't know the cons at this point. It's just not as widely used or widely known.

Support: Click   here , or give them a call at 1-888-205-2045.
Google Hangouts

In today's world Google has a product for everything. Their solution for video conferencing is called Google Hangouts .


  • It's free
  • No time limit

  • Google support is pretty weak for this product right now.
  • Everyone must create a Google account to participate.
Of course, there's always the tried-and-true phone call or text message. The important thing isn't how you stay connected.  Whatever works best for you and the people you're connecting with is the way to go .

We hope this list helps you find ways to connect with others, especially in your Hope Church community. We want to do whatever we can to help you fight the isolation. If you aren't involved at Hope and want to be, give us a call at 513.459.0800.

Praying for you all,
Bill Craig