When I consult with churches that are considering going multisite one of the key exercises I facilitate with their team centers around how they are going to approach preaching in their weekend worship services. It’s a big conversation and a decision that has significant implications to the model and approach that churches take when it comes to multisite.
Inevitably somewhere in the conversation someone challenges the idea of video teaching and says something like, “You don’t know our people, video teaching will never work with our people or in this community.” While I’d be the first to say that video teaching isn’t the right approach for every church to take it works better than you think, more often than you think, and in more locations than you think.
In fact the picture below is a video venue for a large multisite church that I recently took. This venue is their one traditional service that they do. The service has a choir and a more traditional physical space. It’s a very different vibe than the modern worship services they do in their auditoriums, but the video teaching is the same. The average age in this service is over 70. Video works. Even with an older demographic. Even in a traditional setting.
The World is not Engaging with Technology Less
People around the country and around the world are not engaging with technology less, they’re engaging with technology more. Content and information is increasingly being delivered to people over a screen. In fact on a recent trip to the Philippines, even in a poorer area, people had their smart phones. It’s time for churches to stop debating it and watching the world pass them by and start leveraging it.
I Never Saw Jesus Preach the Sermon on the Mount
Whenever this conversation comes up I routinely remind people that I never saw Jesus preach the best sermon in history (commonly referred to as the sermon on the mount) but it’s changed my life. It was written down for us to read because video technology didn’t exist yet. My hunch is if Steve Jobs was a contemporary to Jesus then someone would have pulled out their iPhone and stuck that sermon on YouTube so we could all see and hear it for ourselves.
Video Teaching Creates Greater Cultural Consistency between Campuses
I firmly believe that nothing else in your church has the power to build the unique culture of your church than preaching does. Video teaching provides churches the opportunity to allow teaching to be consistent across campuses and venues, and as a result keep culture more consistent. This is why the church pictured above has video teaching even in their “traditional service.” They wanted the people who attend the traditional service to feel like they were a part of the church not going to another church.
Most People are Against Video Teaching in Principle…until they try it
I’ve found that most “church-people” are against the idea of video teaching until they personally experience it. I say “church-people” on purpose because people who are new to your church have no idea what to expect because they’ve never been to church before. Everything is new to them so I’ve discovered that people who are new to church and Jesus don’t have the same hangups that “church-people” do. Even in the traditional service pictured above I observed firsthand how people quickly forget that they’re watching video preaching and begin to interact with video by laughing, nodding their heads, raising their hands when asked to by the pastor, and even stand up and walk to a volunteer to say yes to following Jesus. All through video teaching.
Posted in Leadership