– You're at home, I'm at home, our congregations are at home for an indefinite period of time, so in this video, we're gonna construct from the ground up, a meaningful and powerful online church service.
We'll explore specific service elements, recording options andspecial considerations to make church online theabsolute best it can be.
(upbeat music) Well, hey there! My name is Brady Shearer.
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Now, this video thatyou're watching right now is actually part two.
So if you haven't watched the first video that we published earlier this week, make sure to go back and do that.
We'll have it linked inthe description below because it's in that video where we talk about casual online church versus formal online church.
Basically does it makesense to just recreate your normal in personSunday service for online, or is there more that can be done.
And spoiler alert, wethink there's a lot more that can be done.
And there are very important reasons why.
In this video we'retalking about the what.
But in part one, we talked about the why, and that foundation is crucial to making sense of all this.
So make sure to go back, watch it if you haven't already.
With that out of the way, let's begin constructing an ideal online church service.
I'm gonna walk you through a process here in this video, but I've also created a Google Doc that's linked in the description below that summarizes this entire process so you can take your team through it.
So make sure to take advantage of that.
It's a free Google Doc linked below.
Let's begin with part one.
What is your church's desired outcome with a service? Because before we canbegin ordering different service elements, weneed to know our goals.
Said differently, before wedecide with route to take, we first need to know our destination.
And in my mind, this is agift for you as a church because when you thinkof an in person gathering on a Sunday morning, anormal Sunday service, you've probably got a pretty good picture of what that looks likein most church settings.
But for online church, there's really no established routine or structure that you must follow.
You've got a complete blank canvas.
This is your chance to innovate, to try something new.
To take a risk.
Because we're all moreopen to change right now than we normally are, andthese opportunities are rare, so I don't want you to overlook them.
So what is your church's desired outcome with an individual church service? Here are some potentialanswers for this question.
Your goal could be to mobilize the saints, meaning there's a lot ofneed in the world right now, and your church wants to actively be the church meeting theneeds of your community.
Your goal could be to administer hope.
A lot of people are despairing right now and you want to remind them of the hope they have in Christ.
Your goal could be to foster community.
We're of course, physicallydistanced right now so you could aim to create space for online community to take place.
These are just a few examples and there are really somany more possibilities so I wanna encourage you to discover what is unique and right for your church in this season.
Next, part two.
What is your church's desired outcome for the next three months or however long in person gatherings end up being suspended.
Now you might have been wondering with part one of this exercise, can we have more than one desired outcome for a service? And my recommendation here would be no.
Choose one desired outcome, stay laser focused, and craft each service element toward that single goal.
But, we're gonna be at this for a little while, it seems.
You might have 12 weeks, let's say, of consecutive online churchservices ahead of you.
So you can have differentgoals for different services.
This question here wants you to begin with the end in mind.
How do you and your church want to come out of this season? At the end of these next six, twelve, twenty-four weeks, whatever it may be, where do you want your church to be? These desired outcomes couldbe congregation centric, but they could also beorganization centric.
Maybe there are some culture issues in leadership in your church that you'd like to tend to.
Well, again, you've got a blank slate here for a prolonged period of time, and this may be the best season to see that transformation take place because change is happening regardless.
So I'd really like that change to be the kind of change our churches could benefit from.
Okay now let's dive into specifics.
First recording options.
Remember, we're leaning into the causal, living room style of online church as we established in part one.
Knowing that, my two preferredmethods for recording would be live streamingfrom your mobile device or pre-recording on a DSLR, or a mirrorless camera and creating a mock live stream withthe premier function of platforms like Facebook and YouTube.
Since the stay at home mandates have been put into place, I have very much enjoyed both of these kinds of services and with both, you canleverage what you have already in terms of gear and tech.
And really, please, justdon't feel any lesser if you're live streamingfrom your mobile device.
Movie stars, professional athletes, famous recording artists are all doing live programming from their phones while they stay at home, and guess what, people are loving it because it's intimate, personal and real.
The same goes for your church.
You can dress it up if you want by recording ahead of time, but don't underestimate the power and effectiveness of connecting to someone directly through a livestream on your phone.
This is not the lesser option.
For many of you, it'llbe the preferred option.
And this is why I startedwith those two questions.
Let your desired outcome be your compass and litmus test for making decisions, not, “Oh this is what this church “down the road is doing.
” Or, “This is how wenormally do it on Sundays.
” This is unventured territory.
Freedom to explore andtry whatever you think will help you reach your destination.
So beware of the pull to fall back into just doing things howwe've always done them.
Let's talk about length, now.
Your online church services will benefit from being shorter thanyour in person services.
Why? Well because you don'thave your congregation's captive attention in the same way.
Their kids are not in kids ministry.
They're with them, climbing on them.
People aren't sitting in a pew free from distractions in your sanctuary.
They're in their own home, free to wander and roam.
So I would start by making your online church service maybe 50% of the length of your in person service.
But I really think the sweet spot is probably around 20 to 30 total minutes.
Because keep in mind, longer does not mean more effective.
Otherwise the average church service would be four hours, or eight hours.
But it's not.
Why? Well because at a certain point, the longer you go, youactually become less effective.
And those limits are much shorter online than they are in person in your sanctuary.
You'll need to accountand adjust for that.
And what's cool about online church is that doesn't even needto be a guessing game.
The online platformswill give you the data and you can see what theaverage watch time is.
You can when people drop off and you can use that to inform your decisions on length.
Let's talk now about service elements.
This is not an exhaustive list, but here are the serviceelements that I considered.
Worship, preaching, communion, prayer, call to action.
Now there are certainly more options but let's talk about these a bit.
What you'll want to do isselect service elements that will help you accomplishyour desired outcome.
So for instance, if your desired outcome is to mobilize the saints, you'll need to include a call to action service element.
Think of this like an announcement except the purpose of it is to explain what needs exist in your community and how you plan on meeting them, and what you'll needfrom your congregation and then, call them to action.
Maybe your desired outcomeis to administer hope.
If so, perhaps yourservice would go like this.
Start with a hope-themed worship song followed by a 12 minutehope-themed message and end it off with communion using whatever elements are available to people in their homes.
Another option with service elements and programming overall, is to not do them all at once, consecutively on a single day, like a traditional in person service.
You could do your 10-20minute message on Sundays, you could do communion Wednesday night, joint worship on Tuesdays.
I attended a communionthat a church was hosting on a Wednesday night last week, and all I had with me at the time was a square of darkchocolate and some water, and I took communion with the two pastors on this live stream, live streaming directly from their phone.
And it was so meaningful.
You know, maybe your church doesn't do communion that often, well perhaps now is the time to do it because it is physically involved, unlike most church service elements, and that really fits a need right now as we are all physically distanced.
So again, it all comes back to that desired outcomefor an individual service and your desired outcome for this entire, prolonged period of physical distancing.
What service elements willhelp you with your goals? And how must you shape and adjust those service elements from what you're traditionally used to? Make sure to grab the Google Doc linked in the description below, that walks you through the entire process for thoughtfully planning an online church service in 2020.
And if you take awayanything from this video, just remember, now is thetime to try something new.
Now is the time to innovate because change is upon us whether you would have chosen it or not.
You can resist that change but it's like a wave in the ocean.
Sure, you can stand up against it, but it's just gonna barrelover you either way.
So ride the wave while you can because it won't last forever and use it as a positiveforce in your church.
Because these opportunities are rare.
So let's take advantageof them as much as we can.
Again, thank you for watching.
If you liked this video, give it a thumbs up and subscribe to this channel.
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We release videos everyTuesday and Thursday.
I'm Brady Shearer signing off for now.
We'll talk soon.
The way that he hides a stain.
(laughter) The way he gets his oil, frack.
(laughter) They way he takes his coffee, black.
– [Man] The way that helikes his art, attack.