Today’s reflection comes from Mariah Pepper
A long long time ago in a distant past known as August 2021, members of the Physical Assets and AV teams met with a company that specializes in AV systems for livestreaming. We made some plans to install cameras and equipment that would allow us to broadcast our in-person worship service live online. We chose the right equipment, placed the order, and waited. And then waited some more. As I am sure you’re aware, the global supply chain for items such as cameras has gotten wildly out of whack lately. So it has taken until now to even have all of the pieces in the United States, let alone where they need to be to get installed in our building. But as of this week, we’re one major step closer to installation, so I wanted to take a moment to describe what this will mean for online worship going forward.
We’ve all had to learn so many new ways of connecting with each other these past two years, and I want to assure you that this change won’t require you to do anything different than you already do. We’ll still have in-person worship Sundays at 10am, and we’ll still have online worship on Facebook and YouTube at the same time, and then available anytime after that. The difference is it will be exactly the same service and it will be live.
Right now everything is pre-recorded, which means the pastors need to get their sermon and prayers done by Thursday afternoon. The music staff has built up an impressive library of recorded, edited, and produced music, anthems, and hymns that we use each week. I then stitch that all together into one video, add announcements and a time of reflection, and upload the whole thing to be broadcast on Sunday mornings. It’s a lot of work, and it’s all very solitary work, whereas worshipping together in person allows for the spirit to bind us together and bring our words and song to life.
One thing we heard from all of you is how warm and welcoming and personal our online worship feels right now, and our goal with livestreaming is to continue that feeling. It won’t feel like you’re watching from the very back of the room. With four cameras and the sound tied directly into our sound system, we hope it will feel like you’re right there in the room – and you might even get a better view of Laura’s organ playing than you would from the sanctuary!
If you’re curious about the details, I’m happy to share! I am also looking for a few folks who are interested in learning to run the livestreaming tech, which is pretty user-friendly if you have some experience with creative software like GarageBand or Audacity. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With cautious optimism for new technology,
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