On Friday, January 24, 2020, Worship Summit Live went live online. Worship Summit Live is an online summit all for church streaming production. The digital summit was an online gathering of emerging thought leaders who all share a passion for spreading the message of God in local and online communities. The summit was a full day of some of the most amazing speakers who focused on technologies for worship. More than 3,000 like-minded church-media professionals and volunteers attended online for the day of live streaming education. Here is what I learned from Worship Summit Live 2020.
The summit was kicked off by our hosts, Tess Protesto and Paul Richards, who jumped right into a conversation with Jeff Fitzgerald, the President and Chief Creative Officer of JeffinHighDef.tv, to talk about the importance of streaming worship services. He spoke about the importance of meeting the worshiper where they are, on their device, and allow them access to worship services they would otherwise not have access to. With today’s latest live streaming technology, Jeff spoke about how easy it is for church volunteers to contribute to the production. From students who are interested in technology to older members who are now more comfortable, many new volunteers are helping their churches create live streams to spread their congregations’ messages.
After the pre-show kick off a full day of speakers followed to discuss a wide range of issues and tips for online church streaming production.
Dr. Barry Hill – Audio for Churches
First up was Dr. Barry Hill, the author of “Mixing for God” and the director of the Audio & Music Production Degree Program at the Lebanon Valley College of Pennsylvania. Dr. Hill came up with a Top 10 list of things you need to know about audio production. It was an incredibly comprehensive look at the tools you need to operate streaming sound. Many of us walked away much more confident to run a soundboard and produce quality audio. Much of church audio production comes down to understanding equipment and how to manage the media team. Dr. Hill reviewed some of the most essential thinking processes audio managers go through as they set up audio for a church service.
Tom Sinclair – Facebook Live for Church
Second up was Tom Sinclair, one of the founding members of his Church Grace Anglican in Fairhope, Alabama, and of the popular “Streaming Idiots Show”. He discussed the power of Facebook and social media for churches, and the biggest takeaway for me was that, in 2020, just because people leave a physical location doesn’t mean they have to find a new church. Facebook is a great way to keep people involved in your church community, and it benefits both the individuals and the church as a whole. Tom’s big tip is all about asking members of your church to “check-in” on Facebook to let their friends know where they are during church. If your church is live streaming, this then provides your members closest friends and family a live window into the church as the service is in progress. It’s a great way to bring new members into your church by leveraging your existing members’ social networks.
Alan Bunt – Live Streaming Systems for Church
Next up was Alan Bunt, the head of Good Shepherd Lutheran, in a remote area of Wisconsin. He shared his church’s live streaming set up and allowed us all to put a real live picture in our heads of what the equipment used looks like and how to practically set it up in a church. Alan showed off his PTZ camera system installed inside of his church, which consists mainly of PTZOptics 30X-SDI cameras. Alan also has a PTZOptics 20X-NDI camera installed across campus in the school area as well. This PTZ camera is connected to his live streaming system over the network using NDI. Alan uses vMix to produce his church’s videos and live stream them. Alan show uses the maximum zoom levels for the PTZOptics 30X cameras and how his audiovisual system is connected and set up.
After that, Darryl and Gerrard introduced us to Vidimo, a product that turns your smartphone into a production studio and switcher. They provide a fantastic demo that showed how the specific product worked and, overall, just gave everyone the idea that there is incredible and affordable technology out there to allow anyone to start streaming their service.
Dave Dolphin – How to apply a large church vision to a small church
Dave Dolphin followed Darryl. Dave is a worship pastor at Cherokee Hills Baptist Church in the Oklahoma City area. He spoke about bringing a big church experience to a small church service. His most impactful advice was to think about the money you are spending on things like equipment or tech and use that money elsewhere to invest in knowledge. A knowledgeable production will create a better end product than one using the latest and greatest tech. Dave talked about high-level advice for church leaders who want to work on their church instead of “in the church.” Sometimes taking a look at the way your church is set up from a high level can really bring a much-needed perspective into the way things are working today and how they can be improved upon in the future.
Will Doggett – Ableton Live for Churches
Will Doggett is an Ableton Live Certified Trainer and the Founder of From Studio to Stage, an online resource dedicated to teaching people how to learn to perform with Ableton Live on stage. Will built-in the notion that anyone can get involved in this type of production even without the most professional studio in the world. He showed equipment and tools that are affordable and easy for everyone to access. Will recently completed a new church focused course teaching media professionals how to use Ableton Live to help produce the music for their Sunday Services. Will has another new course reviewing how to integrate the PTZOptics cameras with the new MIDI application in order to automate PTZ camera movements with Ableton through the worship music services.
Jake Gosselin – Understanding Church Technology Option on a small budget
Jake is the leader of ChurchFront, an organization that helps church leaders small and large grow in creative ways, and he also creates free content on his blog, Youtube Channel, and podcast to help others grow themselves and their church. He gave a great sequence of the equipment and tech you need to start production. For churches without a crazy budget, knowing which equipment you need first was incredibly helpful. Jake’s five tips for improving your church technology set up starts with simple things such as acoustics, audio, lighting, and presentation software. The final step on Jake’s list is adding cameras and preparing to share your services with the world using live streaming.
Seth Haberman – vMix Church Production Tour
Seth is best known online as the Digital Pastor, but in his hometown of Spokane, Washington, he is the pastor of Covenant Church in Moses Lake. He gave us a virtual tour of a vMix control system. While the interface looked incredibly complicated, Seth made it much more understandable. Seth has been live streaming at his church for many years, and he is also very technical. This is a great presentation for a more in-depth look into the software he uses for live streaming from his church.
EasyWorship – Church Presentation Software
The day wrapped up with Fred Callicot and Dan Willard presenting EasyWorship, a software product specifically designed for worship service production. Like so many of the speakers here, Dan and Fred took what looked like a complicated product, broke down its features in simple terms, and gave attendees the confidence that they can use software like EasyWorship.
2020 Worship Summit Live Video