We spend a lot of time talking about community and relationships. That makes sense! We are a community of believers in a divine relationship with God and His creation. As with any relationship that we value, we commit time and energy to nurturing it.
What does this have to do with church tech?
Well, technology is simply a tool. It helps us reach our community in a particular way. Your website is a tool. Your projectors and slides are a tool. Your lighting is a tool. And your sound system is a tool. These tools are used by members of our community, often the “tech team”, to assist in furthering the mission of the church, the worship team and leadership. Some of these technical tools have become crucial components of our services.
But what good is a tool if it isn’t used properly? Would you use a screwdriver instead of a hammer and expect quality results? Using the wrong tool for the job is pretty bad, but there’s something even worse – if you can believe it.
What if those entrusted with the tools don’t actually know how to use them properly?
Asking a new sound tech to produce a great sounding service can be like expecting a plumber to fix your foundation. The result isn’t going to be so great if they don’t actually know how use the right tools and have the right skills to get the job done.
I know some of this might sound a little extreme, but think about the last time you had a real training session for your tech team members. When was it? Who was there? Do you have another one scheduled for any new team members that have come on board since then? Church tech volunteers are an important part of your worship team. And if you don’t think they are a foundational part of your service, just try turning off the power next time you walk by the sound or media booth. Isn’t it time we put a little more focus into that part of our foundation? It’s holding up a lot! Let’s give our church techs the tools and the skills they need to do the job right.
You don’t need to go crazy with this and send your volunteer sound tech to some fancy audio engineering school. But you should at least help them get up to speed on what it means to operate your sound system how to apply the fundamentals of audio to their mix. Even if your tech team is small, you should at least have a leader in place to help nurture, train, and cultivate the volunteers serving along side them. And at a minimum, you should provide some annual training and refresher courses or other professional resources for all tech team members to learn and grow in their craft. This training can be in the form of online courses, seminars, books, one-on-one or team training, group training with another church, or attending conference workshops. There are a lot of great options and affordable resources out there, so there’s really no excuse to short-change the technical ministry with a lack training because “we can’t afford it”. Investing in your team and their skills is an important part of ministry. And remember to maintain the tools that help you build relationships and nurture your community.
So, can you afford to hit that nail with a screwdriver? Get a hammer and hand it to the carpenter!
Here are two of the Resources I’ve produced on this topic:
Here are some of the other Resources I recommend: